A jail sentence for a night out: the dangers of cocaine in Dubai

A jail sentence for a night out: the dangers of cocaine in Dubai Arrests for cocaine-related offences are on the rise in the UAE – particularly among expats and visitors to the country. And the punishments handed out are far more severe than offenders could expect back home. In most cases, those who fall foul are unaware of the strict drug laws in the UAE and the time they could face behind bars.

To be found in possession of the drug, an individual only needs to be found with the drug in their system, through a urine or blood test. The drug will typically show up on these tests for 2-4 days after they have been taken. Penalties for violating these laws can range from substantial fines to lengthy prison sentences, and in extreme cases, even the death penalty for severe drug trafficking offences.

For first time offences, the previous minimum sentence of two years has been changed to three months for first time drug offenders, and a fine between AED 20,000 and AED 100,000. However periods of detention can be extended several times so you could spend several months in total in custody before even being convicted.

Andrew Gurney from UAE law firm GHI Legal, said: ‘We’ve noticed an alarming increase in arrests for cocaine offences. People must think twice before coming into contact with any illegal substances when in the UAE as the authorities take a zero tolerance approach. Simply taking a small amount of cocaine could result in a prison sentence. ‘Anyone who is arrested, should contact my team as soon as possible to get the best possible representation.