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An error has been noted in the above mentioned article by Krupski et al. In the discussion section in the fourth paragraph, ‘greater than 15 cigarettes per day’ should read ‘greater than or equal to 10 cigarettes per day’.
A psychologist in a criminal trial is concerned with establishing by sufficient and relevant evidence that a particular event occurred, and the behaviour involved is the subject of criminal responsibility. The psychologist must provide objective opinion on matters which could not be discerned other than by someone with the appropriate expertise, based on reliable observations and/or tests. This chapter discusses the potential traps into which psychologists might fall. These include: thinking that their expertise relates to matters which are discernible without the benefit of psychological evidence; going beyond their remit; and ignoring the factual aspects of the case. The process of giving evidence is that the witness is first questioned by the side which commissioned the report about the issues on which they assert their expertise; it is followed by further questioning by the other side in the dispute, and later by further questioning by the original questioner.
Dependence increases the likelihood of adverse consequences of cannabis use, but its aetiology is poorly understood.
To examine adolescent precursors of young-adult cannabis dependence.
Putative risk factors were measured in a representative sample (n=2032) of secondary students in the State of Victoria, Australia, six times between 1992 and 1995. Cannabis dependence was assessed in 1998, at age 20–21 years.
Of 1601 young adults, 115 met criteria for cannabis dependence. Male gender (OR=2.6, P < 0.01), regular cannabis use (weekly: OR=4.9; daily: OR=4.6, P=0.02), persistent antisocial behaviour (linear effect P=0.03) and persistent cigarette smoking (linear effect P=0.02) independently predicted cannabis dependence. Neither smoking severity (P=0.83) nor persistent psychiatric morbidity (linear effect P=0.26) independently predicted dependence. Regular cannabis use increased risk only in the absence of persistent problematic alcohol use.
Weekly cannabis use marks a threshold for increased risk of later dependence, with selection of cannabis in preference to alcohol possibly indicating an early addiction process.