The Belgian State will have to pay compensation of more than €90,000 to a seller of hemp flowers. The suspicious materials had been seized for analysis, but poorly preserved and therefore unsaleable thereafter.
“In October 2018, the police seized more than 6 kilograms of cannabis from my client’s warehouse,” said lawyer Hamid El Abouti. “The man runs a store in the center of Brussels that sells cannabidiol, better known as CBD. »
“The substances were seized because passers-by noticed a strong smell of cannabis in the store. During a search, thirteen bags containing a total of 6.837 kilograms of cannabis were seized. In each bag, a sample was taken for analysis. My client did not resist, but asked to recover his equipment as soon as possible. »
Six months later, the trader was told he could get the confiscated goods back, but when he arrived at the police station, it turned out that the CBD flowers had been stored incorrectly. The man refused to take the cannabis back, saying it was unsaleable. The public prosecutor then ordered the destruction of the flowers, but the trader hired a lawyer to seek compensation for his losses.
90,000 euros in damages
The case was brought before the French-speaking court of first instance in Brussels at the end of 2021, which condemned the Belgian State to pay more than €90,000 in damages. According to the court, it is certain that the police made a mistake by not storing the flowers correctly. For each gram of Cannabis that the trader has thus lost, he will receive €12.50. In addition to the €85,462.50, the man was also awarded €5,000 in additional damages.