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Russia: New Restrictions For Controlled Substances

(Jan. 27, 2010) On December 31, 2009, the Government of the Russian Federation issued two regulations which extend the list of narcotic and psychotropic substances and establish a new procedure for their storage and preservation. (Regulations of the Russian Federation Government No. Nos. 1148 & 1186 of Dec. 31, 2009, in force since Jan. 22, 2010, [in Russian], Rossiiskaia Gazeta, Jan. 14, 2010, No. 4, at 19 &Jan. 26, 2010, No. 14, at 12 (official publication).

These regulations calls for additional attention of law enforcers to the so-called “smoking mixtures” and add leaves of sage, flowers and leaves of blue lotus, and seeds of the Hawaiian rose to the list of plants whose cultivation and distribution is prohibited. Following these regulations, only organizations that are licensed to work with controlled substances will be allowed to keep them.

The regulations establish new requirements for storage facilities, which have to be insulated and separated from other commercial or industrial areas. Special equipment to be installed in such storage rooms and maximum reserve volumes are defined by the regulation. Security and equipment requirements, as well as storage conditions, are divided into four categories, depending on the type of substances involved and their public danger. Substances registered as medicines or used for pharmaceutical purposes are exempt from these Regulations, because they are covered by norms of the Health Protection Ministry. Substances intended for animal use are regulated by the Agriculture Ministry. (Commentaries of the Garant legal database [in Russian], (last visited Jan. 22, 2010).)

According to the Russian drug police chief, in 2009 more than 100,000 pounds of illegal drugs were confiscated by police. (Vladimir Bogdanov, Eta Opasnaya Gavaiskaia Roza [This Dangerous Hawaiian Rose, in Russian], Rossiiskaia Gazeta No. 6, 2010, Jan. 15, 2010, available at