Young Booze Busters

The Law

Alcohol and Tobacco

It is against the law for anyone under the age of 18 to buy alcohol, drugs, cigarettes or tobacco products.


In the UK, there are some drugs you’re only allowed to have if you’ve got a prescription from a doctor, and others that you aren’t allowed at all.

There are laws in place to control drugs and help people stay safe. The Misuse of drugs Act (1971) lists these and puts them into categories of Class A, Class B and Class C, depending on how risky and dangerous they are.

Class A drugs such as ecstasy and heroin. If a person has Class A drugs, they could get up to to 7 years in prison or a fine. Producing or dealing could mean life in prison. Any drug prepared for injection becomes a Class A drug.

Class B drugs such as cannabis and amphetamines. If a person has Class B drugs they could get up to 5 years in prison or a fine. Producing or dealing could mean up to 14 years in prison or a fine.

Class C drugs such as benzodiazepines and some painkillers. If a person has Class C drugs (without a prescription) they could get up to 2 years in prison or a fine. Producing or dealing could mean up to 14 years in prison or a fine.

Psychoactive Substances Act (2016)

The Psychoactive Substances Act came into effect on 26 May 2016 meaning that Psychoactive Substances not covered by the Misuse of Drugs Act (1971) are illegal to produce, supply or import. Supplying New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) to someone else, including your friends, or buying them from internet sites based abroad to be delivered here, can mean you can get a prison sentence and/or a fine.

NPS, often incorrectly called legal highs, can contain one or more chemical substances which produce similar effects to illegal drugs. One of the main problems with NPS is that no one can say for sure what’s in them. They may contain chemicals that are far stronger and act differently to drugs like cocaine, ecstasy and speed.