Brits heading to Ayia Napa issued warning over strict new law that could land them in prison
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Brits heading off on their holidays to Cyprus have been warned to beware of a new law on the island if they want to avoid finding themselves in trouble.
Cyprus is a really popular tourist destination for Brits, especially the resort of Ayia Napa, but anyone heading over to enjoy some sea and sunshine had better be aware that they could end up in prison if they're not careful.
Since it's pretty hard to get in vital sunbathing time from behind bars the official warning from the Foreign Office is one worth paying attention to.
Cyprus has harsher drug laws than the UK and the local police's 'no tolerance' policy means if you're caught with an illegal substance you'll either be looking at 'a prison sentence or a hefty fine'.
Just as worrying is that you could end up being stuck in legal limbo for a really long time due to 'current judicial processing delays'.
Actually getting your day in court can take up to two years before your trial is scheduled and according to the Foreign Office delays are pretty regular in Cyprus.
Now, one substance that's pretty popular with some holidaymakers has just been added to the list of banned drugs on the island.
Nitrous oxide, AKA laughing gas, is usually taken by filling up a balloon with gas from a canister (those little metal ones you always see lying around everywhere) before inhaling the gas.
It gives you a brief high and makes you feel giggly, hence the 'laughing gas' name, though it can also lead to hallucinations and paranoia.
It's just been moved onto the list of illegal drugs in Cyprus so you really don't want to get caught with any of the stuff.
Laughing gas has become a favourite among younger Brits, having become their second most popular drug of choice.
As a result the British government has announced their own plans to make it illegal to possess, as while it's currently not legal to sell nitrous oxide a new crackdown on drugs is trying to stamp out people having it anyway.
It's been a controversial move to say the least, resulting in the UK's own drug advisory panel recommending against the crackdown on the grounds that some people need the drug for legitimate purposes while insisting that existing legislation was enough to take action.
If you don't want to be one of those people who goes off on holiday and ends up getting arrested then the advice to stay away from laughing gas while in Cyprus is worth heeding.