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Q - I have an interesting legal dilemma.

I am facing a caution over possession of approx 10 of marijuana, but it was seized prior to my arrest for supposed sexual assault (for which I was not charged, and which has been dropped). However, the search was made BEFORE the arrest as I attempted to dispose of it, and I am told that search rights made as an addition to an arrestable offence must either be via written or AFTER the arrest, which it was neither. Now, the question I have is "are the police able to claim search rights through The Misuse Of Drugs Act 1971" or would they be unable to seeing as they were there on a different matter? I would appreciate your opinion.

A - Police are able to search anyone they have reasonable grounds to suspect may be in possession of controlled drugs, without an arrest, under s23 of the Misuse of Drugs Act.

In practice, even evidence obtained without legal authority is usually admissible in the UK courts. In the US the sentences are heavier, but the rules on admissibility of evidence are much tighter.

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