U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has issued guidance on the methodology that is utilized to determine if an article constitutes prohibited drug paraphernalia within the meaning of 21U.S.C.863 and therefore inadmissible into the United States.

Per the guidance drug paraphernalia is defined as follows:

“Drug paraphernalia” means any equipment, product, or material of any kind which is primarily intended or designed for use in manufacturing, compounding, converting, concealing, producing, processing, preparing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance, possession of which is unlawful under this subchapter. It includes items primarily intended or designed for use in ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing marijuana, cocaine, hashish, hashish oil, PCP, or amphetamines into the human body, such as:

(1) metal, wooden, acrylic, glass, stone, plastic, or ceramic pipes with or without screens, permanent screens, hashish heads, or punctured metal bowls

(2) water pipes

(3) carburetion tubes and devices

(4) smoking and carburetion masks

(5) roach clips

(6) miniature spoons

(7) chamber pipes

(8) carburetor pipes

(9) electric pipes

(10) air-driven pipes

(11) chillums

(12) bongs

(13) ice pipes or chillers

(14) wired cigarette papers

(15) cocaine freebase kits

In the guidance, CBP has also determined that when considering if an item constitutes drug paraphernalia the following relevant factors may be considered:

(1) Instructions, oral or written, provided with the item concerning its use; 

(2) Descriptive materials accompanying the item which explain or depict its use;

(3) National and local advertising concerning its use; the manner in which the item is displayed for sale; whether the owner, or anyone in control of the item, is a legitimate supplier of like or related items to the community, such as a licensed distributor or dealer of tobacco products; direct or circumstantial evidence of the ratio of sales of the item(s) to the total sales of the business enterprise; the existence and scope of legitimate uses of the item in the community, and expert testimony concerning its use.

Items determined to fall within the meaning of drug paraphernalia are prohibited from importation into the United States and are subject to seizure or other types of enforcement actions.

IBC Customs Brokerage, Inc. (IBC) has multiple experienced and Licensed U.S. Customs Brokers on staff that can assist with determining if an item constitutes drug paraphernalia.

Please do not hesitate to contact an IBC representative at (305) 591-8080 should you require additional information or assistance in complying with any other CBP policy, procedure, or law.

Thank you in advance for your business and for allowing IBC to be part of your supply chain.

Compliance Team

IBC Customs Brokerage, Inc.

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