The penalty for ringa narkotikabrott and drograttfylleri in Sweden
Thank you for reaching out to Lawline!
The way I interpret your question is that you were caught driving while having THC in your blood. You’ve now been prosecuted and charged with ringa narkotikabrott (in this case use of narcotics) and driving under the influence (rattfylleri). From what I can gather, you’re wondering what the punishment will be for these crimes, should you be convicted. You also seem to claim that you used the substance outside of Sweden - a question that I'll adress as well. Relevant rules can be found in narkotikastrafflagen (NSL), trafikstrafflagen (TSL) and brottsbalken (BrB).
Illicit use of narcotics is prohibited in Sweden (1 § NSL). THC, as the main active substance in cannabis, is furhtermore classified as a narcotic substance here (2 § regulation 1992:1554). For the use of such a substance to be punishable, it’s enough that the person using the substance is aware of the substance they’re using. It’s not a requirement that they know that the substance is illegal in itself.
Finally, the punishment for ringa narkotikabrott is a fine or prison for up to six months (2 § NSL). The typical punishment for using cannabis is 30 ”dagsböter” (a daily fine, and the size of each fine is determined by your financial situation). Hence, I believe this would be most likely in your situation.
Rattfylleri, and in this case especially ”drograttfylleri” means driving under the influence of a narcotic substance. To be punished, it’s sufficient that there is a trace of any narcotic substance in the blood of the driver either during or after the drive. However, having a narcotic substance in your blood is not punishable if you’ve taken the substance in accordance with a doctors prescription.
The punishment for driving under the influence is the same as for ringa narkotikabrott: fine or prison for up to six months (4 § TSL). This means it’s likely that in your case, unless there are any aggravating circumstances that I’m unaware of, the sentence should be "dagsböter" here as well. How many is hard to tell, but likely somewhere between 40 and 150. This is consequently the more serious crime of the two.
The law against the use of narcotics is universally applicable. This means that using narcotics in another country could still be a crime according to swedish laws. However, this does not mean that a swedish court will necessarily have jurisdiction over the matter. Jurisdictional rules can be found in ch. 2 BrB, and they generally require some sort of connection between either the offence or the perpetrator in question, and Sweden (when it comes to crimes commited outside of Swedish territory). Such a connection may be at hand if you, for example, are a swedish citizen. Since I don’t have enough information about you and the circumstances surrounding the matter, it’s hard to say for certain whether a swedish court would have jurisdiction if the THC was used outside of Sweden.
When someone has committed several crimes and are convicted for these, the aggregated penalty is typically determined by stacking the individual punishments from highest to lowest, removing about half of the size of each penalty for every penalty that is ”stacked”. This means, assuming in your case that the penalty for rattfylleri is considered the highest (for example 50 dagsböter), the aggregated penalty should end up somewhere around 65 dagsböter (50 + 15).
In conclusion, using THC outside of Sweden is an offence according to swedish laws – but it’s not certain that a swedish court would have jurisdiction in matter (regarding specifically ringa narkotikabrott). As said above, I don’t have enough information to say for sure.
Furthermore, the penalty for ringa narkotikabrott is typically a daily fine which size is determined by your economy. The same thing goes for rattfylleri. This applies unless there are any aggravating circumstances. Henceforth, the aggregated penalty in your case – if you are convicted for both crimes – will likely be a certain number of daily fines. How many exactly is hard to say; maybe somewhere around 50-100.
I hope you feel that you got an answer to your question. If not, you’re more than welcome to reach out to us again.