04.03.2021 by

Isle of Man Prosecutes Individual Steroid Users

Isle of Man Prosecutes Individual Steroid Users

Manx bodybuilder gets in trouble for importing personal supply of anabolic steroids.

Mark Richards, a 34-year old bodybuilder living in the Isle of Man, didn’t think twice about ordering a personal supply of anabolic steroids from an internet source. After all, steroid use and possession is decriminalized in Mann.

Of course, steroid trafficking and distribution is highly illegal and convicted steroid dealers could face time in prison. And the eight vial of injectable steroids purchased by Richards would never be confused as a quantity consistent with commercial distribution. So Richards had no worries.

Where are my steroids?

Richards’ biggest worry was about being scammed. When his order didn’t show up, he repeatedly contacted the Isle of Mans Post Office last summer regarding the whereabouts of his steroid order.

It turned out that Richards was not scammed. His package did arrive at the Post Office on July 3, 2020. However, local authorities had intercepted the “suspicious package”.

Richards learned that he was being charged with the illegal production (importation) of anabolic steroids and other controlled drugs. Apparently, it was legal to use steroids but it was illegal to import them by mail.

“The Customs and Excise Division would remind the public that where the law permits the personal import of anabolic steroids or other medicines controlled as Class C drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act, persons may only import them if they bring them into the country in person,” according to the government website. “They may not import them by post, courier services or in freight; nor can they be obtained and imported by someone else.”

So while a Manx citizen could go to the United Kingdom and buy some steroids and bring them back home with them (on their person), they could not simply order the same steroids online and have them shipped home by mail.

Roberts admitted importing the steroids via his defense advocate during a voluntary interview at police headquarters on October 5, 2020. Roberts insisted that he did not know it was illegal.

“At the time he ordered them he didn’t realise he was committing an offence,” defense advocate James Peterson told police. “He says if he realised it was illegal he wouldn’t have done it.”

Unfortunately, ignorance of the law is no excuse. Roberts was convicted of the violation and ordered to pay £250 in fines in addition to £125 in prosecution costs.

Roberts only paid £50 for his 8-vial steroid order. His total loss including the cost of the order added up to £425. This turned out to be a very expensive lesson for someone who allegedly didn’t know that mail importation of steroids was illegal.

Even though the Isle of Man is a self-governing British Crown dependency and not considered part of the United Kingdom, it is worth noting that the steroids laws prohibiting the mail importation of steroids are very similar in the UK.

Hopefully, this information will be useful to any UK residents who were not aware of the laws against mail importation.

  • IOMToday. (March 4, 2021). Steroids user says he didn’t know he was committing a crime. Retrieved from

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