Koreans in Canada warned of penalties for smoking marijuana

Koreans in Canada warned of penalties for smoking marijuana

Canada is on track to legalize marijuana. / Reuters

By Jung Min-ho

With Canada expected to legalize the recreational use of marijuana by summer, Korea's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has warned Koreans living there of jumping on the bandwagon.

"In accordance with the nationality principle, all Koreans should follow the Korean law," the ministry said on Facebook Tuesday. "The Korean government will step up inspections of people who come from Canada and their belongings as well as all packages from the country."

The government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is pushing ahead with legalizing cannabis in July. Although it is uncertain whether he will be able to accomplish it by then, the country appears to be on that track as most Canadians support the move.

Under the proposed legislation, the Canadian government can regulate the production and distribution of cannabis through licensing.

"Please be aware that Koreans could face serious legal consequences for having or using it," the ministry said.