Casa Presidencial outlines stand on decriminalization

The nation’s highest ranking anti-drug officials came out with an unusual statement Thursday and insisted that Costa Rica would not decriminalize drug trafficking.

The officials are Mauricio Borashi Hernández, the anti-drug vice minister at Casa Presidencial, and Carlos Alvarado Valverde, director general of the Instituto Costarricense sobre Drogas.

The written statement noted that drug use in Costa Rica is not prosecuted criminally but that trafficking and possession of drugs for sale is a crime.

The men made a point that there is a gray area between decriminalization and strict enforcement. They called it black and white with gray in the middle. A country, they said, has to decide where in the gray it wishes to be. However, under no circumstance will Costa Rica consider decriminalization of drug trafficking because to do so would create a free zone for drugs that would affect the rest of the world, they said.

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