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Federal Importing or Exporting a Border Controlled Drug or Plant

Commonwealth Offences – Federal

Welcome to the Federal Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant article page. Everything you need to know about Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant according to Federal law – Dated: 01/09/2009

What the Law States according to Federal Law for Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant

According to Federal Law for the charge of Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant:

The Maximum Penalty – Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant

According to Federal Law for the charge of Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant:

The maximum penalty for the charge of importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant depends on the type and quantity and type of drug imported.

There are three different quantity ranges under the Criminal Code Act 1995. They are importing or exporting a border controlled drug, importing or exporting marketable quantities of a border controlled drug, and importing or exporting commercial quantities of a border controlled drug.

Jail sentences are imposed for all offenders charged with importing or exporting a marketable or commercial quantity of cocaine or heroin.

In NSW, a court can impose any of the following penalties for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge.

  • Section 10
  • Fine
  • Good behaviour bond
  • Community service order (CSO)
  • Suspended sentence
  • Intensive correction order (previously periodic detention)
  • Home detention
  • Prison sentence

You’ll find a brief description of each of these penalties at the bottom of this page.

Likely Penalty

Local Court

Based on our experience and statistics from the Judicial Commission of New South Wales we believe that the penalty in a case that is within the mid range of seriousness for the offence of importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant, if heard in the District Court is likely to be:

  • Heroin: Imprisonment for a period of 8 years.
  • Amphetamines: Imprisonment for a period of 7 years.
  • Cocaine: Imprisonment for a period of 7 years.
  • Ecstasy: Imprisonment for a period of 6 years.
  • GHB: Imprisonment for a period of 6 years.

The above penalties are based on a quantity that is commercial value. Penalties vary depending upon the quantity of the prohibited drug.

What the Police must prove according to Federal Law for Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant

To convict you of a Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge, the police must prove each of the following matters beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1. You import or export a substance; and
  2. The substance is a border controlled drug or border controlled plant; and
  3. The quantity imported or exported is a marketable/commercial quantity.

Possible Defences under Federal Law – Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant

Possible defences to an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge include but are not limited to:

  1. You did not import or export a substance.
  2. The substance was not a border controlled drug or border controlled plant.
  3. The quantity imported or exported was not a marketable/commercial quantity.
  4. You have a reasonable and honest belief the substance was not a border controlled drug or border controlled plant.

In Federal which court will hear the matter – Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant

This matter is dealt with in the District Court.

Fines for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge: When deciding the amount of a fine for a possession of data with intent charge the magistrate or judge should consider your financial situation and your ability to pay any fine they set.

Good behaviour bond for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge: This is an order of the court that requires you to be of good behaviour for a specified period of time. The court will impose conditions that you will have to obey during the term of the good behaviour bond. The maximum duration of a good behaviour bond is five years.

Community service order for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge (CSO): This involves either unpaid work in the community at a place specified by probation and parole or attendance at a centre to undertake a course, such as anger management. In order to be eligible for a CSO you have to be assessed by an officer of the probation service as suitable to undertake the order.

Suspended sentence for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge: This is a jail sentence that is suspended upon you entering into a good behaviour bond. Provided the terms of the good behaviour bond are obeyed the jail sentence will not come into effect. A suspended sentence is only available for sentences of imprisonment of up to two years.

Periodic detention for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge (commonly known as weekend detention): This form of imprisonment ceased to be a sentencing option in October 2010.

Intensive correction order for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge (ICO): This option has replaced periodic detention. The court can order you to comply with a number of conditions, such as attending counselling or treatment, not consuming alcohol, complying with a curfew and performing community service.

Jail for an Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant charge: This is the most serious penalty for the charge of Importing or exporting a border controlled drug or plant and involves full time detention in a correctional facility.

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