Turkish Penal Code and related provisions on Drug Trafficking
Applicable law in respect to Drug Trafficking in Turkey
Production and import or export of drugs are punished with imprisonment sentence from 20 to 30 years, and sale or supply by a sentence not less than 10 years. In this case, punishments are linked to drug type, with a specific requirement to increase these sentences by 50 % if the drugs or cordials involved are cocaine, heroin, morphine or morphine base; a similar increase is imposed in cases where organised crime is involved, or where those convicted held positions linked to legal trades, such as doctors, pharmacists, health officers, etc.
Article 188 of Turkish Penal Code:
- 1. The production of drugs and cordials without any authorization or license or breach of rules while producing, any person who produces imports or exports addictive or relieving/exciting drugs without license or contrary to the license is punished with imprisonment from twenty years to thirty years and also imposes punitive fine up to twenty thousand days.
- 2. The executed portion of the punishment imposed at the end of the trial proceeded in a country where the exportation of addictive or relieving drugs is considered as importation of the same in view of other country, is set-off from the punishment to be imposed upon finalization of the trial held in Turkey due to exportation of addictive and relieving drugs
- 3. Any person who sells, supplies, delivers,dispatch, transports, stores, purchases, accepts or carries addictive or relieving/exciting drugs without license or contrary to the license, is punished with imprisonment not less than ten years and also imposed punitive fine up to twenty days.
- 4. In case the offense involves heroin, cocaine, morphine or base-morphine, the punishment to be imposed according to above subsections is increased by one half.
- 5. In case of commission of offenses listed in above subsections within the frame of activities of an organized group, the punishment to be imposed according to above subsections is increased by one half. The provisions of above subsections are applied in every aspect for all kinds of drugs with relieving or exciting affect, of which the production is subject to permission of the competent authorities and the sale is realized under prescription issued by a physician.
- 6. Any person who engages in import, sale, purchase, transport, storage or export of any product of which the import and production is subject to permission of the official authorities with the purpose of using this in production of addictive or relieving/exciting drugs is punished with imprisonment not less than four years and also imposed punitive fine up to twenty thousand days.
- 7. In case of commission of the offenses mentioned in this article by a physician, dentist, pharmacist, chemist, veterinary, health personnel, laboratory technician, midwife, nurse, dentistry technician, nurse, health personnel or any other person dealing in chemistry or pharmacy; the punishment to be imposed is increased by one half
- 2. Criteria considered by Courts which may lead to aggravation of punishment
Punishments are linked to drug type, with a specific requirement to increase these sentences by 50 % if the drugs or cordials involved are cocaine, heroin, morphine or morphine base; a similar increase is imposed in cases where organized crime is involved, or where those convicted held positions linked to legal trades, such as doctors, pharmacists, health officers, etc
Although there are no specific provisions which reveal the amount criteria of drug smuggling in the determination of the sentence, the Criminal Court in its judgment shall consider in accordance with Article 3 and 61 of Turkish Penal Code, the way of the commission of such offense, the defendant’s role, the amount of uncovered drugs and its type and hazardousness.
The criteria of amounts also differ according to the place of offence. For instance, if the offence is committed in a place where the drug smuggling is intense, or in a place where it is few, these may be subject to different sentences.
Below is a table which is shared by a Judge for 10th Criminal Court of Cassation in 2013. Even though it is not binding and reflects the law before 2014 reform, it may give some ideas about the amount criteria. Therefore, we would like to attach this table in order to provide an answer for your question to an extent.
Please note that at the time of the publishing of this table, the punishment for sale and supply was imprisonment “from 5 to 15 years” however, it has been replaced in June 2014 by “minimum 10 years”. Therefore, the minimum years on the table should be thought accordingly in which minimum is 10 years rather than 5.
|Amount of Cannabis||Amount ofHeroin-Cocaine||According to the Amount||Taking into consideration the “Proportionality Principle According to Article 3 and “Other Criterion” defined under Art 61 of Turkish Penal Code|
|(…) – 1 kg||(…) – 40 gr||5 years||5 years- 6 years|
|1 kg-5 kg||40 gr-200 gr||5 years- 6 years||5 years- 7 years|
|5 kg- 20||200 gr- 1 kg||6 years- 7 years||5 years- 8 years|
|20 kg- 50 kg||1 kg – 4 kg||7 years- 8 years||6 years- 9 years|
|50 kg-150 kg||4 kg- 8 kg||8 years- 10 years||7 years- 11 years|
|150 kg- 300 kg||8 kg- 15 kg||11 years- 13 years||10 years- 14 years|
|300 kg- Above||15 kg-Above||13 years- 15 years||11 years- 15 years|