Law blurs cannabis distinction

A legal anomaly in Greece means the owner of a store that is part of a chain selling items made of processed cannabis hemp has been charged with drug offenses even though Greeks have already been acquitted of this same offense 87 times, sources said yesterday. The European Union allows and even subsidizes the cultivation of hemp (Cannabis sativa), which is used to manufacture a number of products, including clothes. But under Greek law, items made using hemp are classed as drugs. Over the last eight years, most of the 18 stores around Greece which were part of the Kannabishop chain have shut down because their owners suffered financially when trying to mount defenses against drugs charges. The owner of the Kannabishop in central Athens, Krista Pappa, has been charged with possessing and trading in drugs after authorities tested the contents of cannabis tea that she was selling at the store. Pappa said the level of cannabis in the tea was within EU limits. She aims to appeal to the EU if Greek courts rule against her.