Two-time Olympic basketball champion and WNBA star Brittney Griner was recently sentenced to nine years imprisonment in Russia for being in possession of cannabis vape. Is it illegal to fly with cannabis vape?
In the US, marijuana is legal in some states, meaning you can carry them freely without being arrested. But at the federal level, it is illegal, meaning you shouldn’t carry it across the states where it is considered legal. The same applies in different countries worldwide – there are cities where cannabis is legal, and there are cities where it is not.
Brittney Griner had cannabis-derived oil cartridges in her carry-on luggage, which was detected at a Moscow airport in February, according to Russian authorities, and that landed her a nine-year jail term. Before her judgment, Griner had told the court she had no intention of breaking the country’s law by bringing vape cartridges with cannabis oil while traveling to Yekaterinburg for a basketball game in February.
But then, laws about possessing cannabis products vary by state and country. You should be aware of such laws before moving with cannabis products.
Is Cannabis Legal in the US?
At the federal level, cannabis is still an illegal product in the US; however, in some states, cannabis is approved for elderly people – it is legal in those states, but for specific age brackets.
THC is the primary psychoactive substance in marijuana, while CBD is a non-psychoactive component of cannabis, infused and sold in other products, such as lotions and supplements. Some specific cannabis-infused products, including CBD oils, are illegal at the federal level if they contain more than 0.3% THC on a dry weight basis.
Well, it is not clear if the cartridges found on Griner were either or both CBD or THC. In the US, the Food and Drug Administration department approved Epidiolex – it is the only legal cannabis-derived product in the US (at the federal level). Epidiolex is a purified form of CBD. Also, the agency approves three synthetic cannabis-related drug products: Syndros (dronabinol), Marinol (dronabinol), and Cesamet (nabilone). You can legally get these products/drugs with prescriptions by licensed healthcare providers.
If You’re Planning to Travel with Cannabis Products, Know This!
Traveling internationally with cannabis products, the laws vary from state to state and country to country. Hence, there is no one-rule-for-all that applies to traveling internationally with cannabis products. That said, if cannabis is declared an illegal product in a country, traveling with it to that country may land you serious consequences.
To take for example, cannabis is legal for adults in Canada, but on the government’s official website for travel and tourism, it is shown that transporting cannabis across Canadian borders is illegal, regardless of the amount of cannabis and medical authorizations.
So, it is important to look out for and read about a country’s law on cannabis before traveling with such products. You could be denied entry into a country for possessing cannabis or prosecuted with a jail term, as in the case of Brittney Griner.
In Russia, marijuana/cannabis is totally banned – whether you have it on as a prescribed drug or for any other purpose, the Russian Police would have you arrested and arraigned in court.