Human Growth Hormone, or HGH as it is more commonly referred to, might be best known by most people for its role in body building or in controversies involving professional athletes, the truth is that HGH is actually used for a wide variety of valid medical treatments in many countries, and New Zealand is no exception. Just as steroids have many truly beneficial medicinal uses in the right circumstances, HGH can also be seen as a helpful treatment in the right circumstances.
On the other hand, it’s also important to realize when looking at New Zealand law that there is quite a bit of difference between supplements and treatments that have some aspect of HGH or even pitch themselves as HGH products and the actual unfiltered hormones themselves.
Generally speaking, unfiltered HGH is considered illegal almost everywhere in the first world because of its potential harmful effects on the human body given long-term use. What makes things even murkier is that sometimes it’s not 100% clear just what the law says about HGH.
New Zealand is a case where the use of HGH for body building or athletic enhancement is, in theory, against the law, but as of this writing there seems to be virtually no enforcement of these laws and little movement towards moving these “drugs” to a more dangerous designation that would get them more thoroughly pursued.
In fact, a recent article by the New Zealand Herald newspaper even points out that the seemingly complete lack of effort to enforce these laws could have them in violation of a UN treaty. This treaty talked about a concentrated effort to remove different types of peptides, steroids, and performance enhancing drugs from casual use or athletic competition by making them all illegal due to their potential harmful effect on the body.
However because of the lack of enforcement, some really interesting questions are coming up on just whether or not they are in violation of these treaties and just what the status is for these performance enhancers. Obviously if they’re being administered through a hospital program then they’re legal when used in that one specific situation, but what about unsanctioned use?
The long answer is that yes, they are illegal. HGH is illegal for its common use in body building or performance enhancement in the nation of New Zealand, but the penalties for possessing this drug are very light compared to many others and compared to the penalties that many other countries put on possession charges.
Add in the fact that penalties are light and prosecutions are rare, and it’s not hard to see why there would be confusion about the legality status. For many athletes and body builders this seems like a small risk compared to the possibility of massive benefits. In fact, the penalties for importing restricted medicine (which is what HGH would be classified as in New Zealand) have maximum fines of only $20,000 and a maximum prison term of only 6 months.
Once again, that’s assuming you get the worst possible scenario if caught. Considering how often these cases can be pleaded down or the fact that in less than a year a person importing would be back out, it’s not a major deterrent.
Further driving the potential issues and problems here is the fact that prosecutions are actually quite rare because they are so difficult to prove and they are very expensive on top of that.
Paying a huge amount of tax payers’ money on a case that might not get a conviction at all, and will bring a slap on the wrist type sentence and it makes sense why this seems like a poor use of law enforcement resources and court time.
In fact New Zealand’s record on HGH prosecutions is stunningly low: only 6 cases since 2009 have been tried, or an average of one a year. The net result of these cases? 10 people convicted. Obviously it’s widespread knowledge that there is far more HGH use throughout the land of the Kiwis than that, but these are hard cases to prosecute and in most cases there simply isn’t a lot of motivation to do so.
For anyone looking to use pure HGH (this does not include the many “HGH-related products” and supplements that seem to be in every body building or fitness store and are questionable at best) it’s important to understand that yes, despite the low rate of prosecutions or interest, HGH is still an illegal drug in New Zealand and anyone using it for enhancement is technically breaking the law.
It’s easy to see why someone would think it was legal to use with all the advertisements and lack of cases, but it’s not. HGH is in fact, illegal in New Zealand.