Romania Country Drug Report 2019

Drug laws and drug law offences

National drug laws

Since 2014, penalties for drug law offences in Romania have been linked to the type of drug, with higher penalties being imposed for offences related to drugs considered ‘high risk’. The legislation also distinguishes being users and addicts, according to diagnosis. Changes to the Criminal Code in 2014 reduced some penalty ranges for supply offences.

Drug consumption is not allowed, but no punishment is specified. In the case of possession for personal use, the court can impose a fine or a prison sentence of 3 months to 2 years, or 6 months to 3 years, depending on the type of drug. A drug user who is convicted of any of these offences can avoid punishment by agreeing to attend an integrated assistance programme; the consent of the drug user is a prerequisite for inclusion in the programme. This is clearly defined in the Criminal Code from 2014.

All actions related to the production and sale of drugs are punishable by 2-7 years’ imprisonment or 5-12 years’ imprisonment, depending on the type of drug. Similarly, the import or export of drugs is punishable by 3-10 or 7-15 years’ imprisonment.

Following the emergence of new psychoactive substances in Romania in 2009-10, two initiatives were adopted in 2011. A Joint Ministerial Order strengthened the enforcement of various existing laws, such as consumer safety laws and tax laws; the second was a new law penalising the unauthorised supply of any products with potential psychoactive effects, regardless of their intended use. The new law defines the characteristics of such products as well as the procedure for authorising the supply of such products. Violations of the law are crimes punishable by prison sentences of up to 5 years (the sentence is reduced if the psychoactive effects were not known to the seller).

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Drug law offences

Drug law offence (DLO) data are the foundation for monitoring drug-related crime and are also a measure of law enforcement activity and drug market dynamics; they may be used to inform policies on the implementation of drug laws and to improve strategies.

In 2017, close to 5 000 offences related to drug trafficking were recorded by Romanian police.


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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.