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Possess a Prohibited Drug

Drug Offences – NSW

Welcome to the NSW Possess a prohibited drug article page. Everything you need to know about Possess a prohibited drug according to NSW law – Dated: 01/09/2009

What the Law States according to NSW Law for Possess a prohibited drug

According to NSW Law for the charge of Possess a prohibited drug:

On the police facts sheet and the court attendance notice that you may have received you will have a reference to the law part and a short description of offence. These references help the court and the legal profession to identify the exact offence you have been charged with. The law part and short description for this offence are set out in the table below:

Law Part Short Description
3145 Possess Prohibited Drug

The Maximum Penalty – Possess a prohibited drug

According to NSW Law for the charge of Possess a prohibited drug:

The maximum penalty for the charge of possess prohibited drug (Section 10 of the Drugs Misuse and Trafficking Act) is a fine of 20 penalty units and/or 2 years imprisonment.

In NSW, a court can impose any of the following penalties for a possess prohibited drug charge.

  • Section 10: Possess a prohibited drug proven but dismissed
  • 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 possess prohibited drug, if heard in the Local Court is likely to be:

  • Ecstasy: A bond under section 10 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act for a period of 12 months.
  • Cocaine: A bond under section 10 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act.
  • Amphetamines: A fine of $400.
  • Heroin: A fine of $300.
  • Cannabis: A fine of $250.

District Court

If this matter is finalised in the District Court the likely penalty is:

  • Heroin: Imprisonment for a period of 2 years.
  • Cocaine: A good behaviour bond under section 9 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act.
  • Ecstasy: A good behaviour bond under section 9 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act.
  • Amphetamines: A good behaviour bond under section 9 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act.
  • Cannabis: A fine of $200.

What the Police must prove according to NSW Law for Possess a prohibited drug

To convict you of a possess prohibited drug charge, the police must prove each of the following matters beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1. You had a prohibited drug in your possession.

They will also need to prove that you were the person who committed the possess prohibited drug offence.

Possible Defences under NSW Law – Possess a prohibited drug

Possible defences to a Possess a Prohibited Drug charge include but are not limited to:

  • Duress
  • Necessity
  • Self Defence

In NSW which court will hear the matter – Possess a prohibited drug

This matter is a summary matter and can only be finalised in the Local Court.

Section 10 for a Possess a prohibited drug charge: avoiding a criminal record. Normally, when you plead guilty to a criminal offence, the court imposes a penalty and records a conviction. If the court records a conviction, you will have a criminal record. However, if we can convince the court not to convict you, there will be no penalty of any type and no criminal record. In all criminal cases, the court has the discretion not to convict you, but to give you a Section 10 dismissal instead. Read more.

Fines for a Possess a prohibited drug 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 a Possess a prohibited drug 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 a Possess a prohibited drug 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 a Possess a prohibited drug 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 a Possess a prohibited drug charge (commonly known as weekend detention): This form of imprisonment ceased to be a sentencing option in October 2010.

Intensive correction order for a Possess a prohibited drug 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 a Possess a prohibited drug charge: This is the most serious penalty for the charge of Possess a prohibited drug and involves full time detention in a correctional facility.

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