Our experienced criminal law solicitors have prepared a brief overview of the law relating to possessing things.
If you or someone you care about is facing a drug allegation, you need specific advice and should contact Gatenby Criminal Lawyers on 55800120 for advice.
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Possessing Things – The Law
Section 11 of the Drugs Missuse Act 1986 creates the offence of Possessing things. The section provides:
A person who has in his or her possession anything for use in connection with the commission of a crime defined in this part or that the person has used in connection with such a purpose;
A person who unlawfully has in his or her possession anything (not being a hypodermic syringe or needle) for use in connection with the administration, consumption or smoking of a dangerous drug; or that the person has used in connection with such a purpose;
Elements of the offence
To be found guilty of the offence of possessing a thing the prosecution is required to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the following elements:
- That the accused was the occupier or concerned in the management or control of a place;
- That the accused permitted the use of the place
- That an offence against the Drugs Misuse Act 1986 occurred.
The maximum penalty for this offence is 15 years imprisonment. Where the thing is not a hypodermic needle or syringe the maximum penalty is 2 years impriosnment.
Jurisdiction – Where will the matter be heard?
Pursuant to section 13 of the Drugs Misuse Act 1986 the offence of possessing things is to be heard and determined in the Magistrate Court.
Conviction – Does a conviction have to be recorded?
The sentencing Court has a discretion whether or not to record a conviction against you for the offence of possessing things. Generally a conviction would not be recorded for a first offence for this type of offence, although one is likely for subsequent convictions.
The relevant factors are set out in section 12 of the Penalties and Sentences Act 1992, and include, the nature of the offence, the offenders character and age, together with the impact the recording a conviction would have on the offenders chances of finding employment. If you are concerned about a conviction being recorded on you or a loved you should seek legal advice.
For legal advice specific to your matter, you should immediately contact Gatenby Criminal Lawyers on (07) 5580 0120.