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The state of NSW maintains strict legislations and penalties for all those guilty of dealing with a prohibited plant. The penalties for any of these offences depend on;
There are many examples of prohibited plants as defined by the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW). It gives a prohibited plant as;
Also, Cannabis in this section includes; Cannabis leaf, resin, dried extracts or any other forms of street slang it is expressed.
The Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW) and other relevant legislation in NSW provide description and guidance on the legal procedures and punishments for drug offences in NSW.
If an individual is convicted in a New South Wales court for a cannabis offence, the offence will show up as a disclosable court outcome (DCO) on a NSW Criminal History Check certificate.
Drug offences in NSW can be heard Summarily or as indictable offences depending on the severity of the Charge. It is also possible for NSW courts to alter the courts or Drug offence charges depending on what they interpret the Charge.
Section 25 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW) makes it an offence for a person to Supply a Cannabis plant. Together with other prohibited plants, the offence incurs punishments between;
If the supply was to a person under 16 years, the Act stipulates 4200 penalty units or 25 years imprisonment.
The only defence from this Charge is where the accused person can prove that the amount was for purposes other than supply.
It is an offence to grow or cultivate Cannabis unless through a federal licensing scheme or order. Section 23 of the Act stipulates a person to have committed an offence under the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW).
Cultivating a prohibited drug in NSW is an offence that incurs between 10 years and 20 years imprisonment depending on the amount of Cannabis cultivated.
It is a criminal offence to possess Cannabis in NSW. It includes where the accused person;
The punishment for a summary offence incurs;
Section 13 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW) prohibits all unlicensed (illegal) administering prohibited substances to others. The offence incurs a penalty of 20 penalty units and/or two years imprisonment if heard by a Local Court.
The penalties are higher if they are for indictable convictions.
It is a gross violation to knowingly or recklessly take part in the manufacturing or producing of a prohibited drug. It is a matter of aggravation that the accused; manufactures or participates in a child's presence. However, it may be a defence favouring the defendant if they prove that such exposure did not affect the child.
The punishment for such an offence is made severe by the amount of substance the offender held at the time. The court may also acquit the person of a more grievous offence of prohibited drug manufacture if it is convinced the person did not possess up to the quantity.
Section 28 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW) describes an offence that conspires or agrees with another to participate in a drug offence. It is also an offence if the crime is outside NSW, and any of the conspirators are within the state.
The person is also guilty if they advised, inspired, aided or procured the offence in any place outside NSW. This offence attracts penalties equal if the person commits such an offence in NSW.
The punishments include any or all of;
A person is guilty of a drug trafficking offence if they were found in possession of Cannabis that is as much or more than the trafficable quantity under the law. Also, a person is considered guilty of trafficking a drug if they possess a "trafficable quantity”.
However, it may be a defence of assuming a person to traffic a prohibited substance if they prove that the drug in their possession was for purposes other than supply.
It is an offence for possession to get possession of a precursor or an apparatus used to manufacture drugs. It also includes cases where the person possessed any of these instruments to manufacture, produce or process the drugs.
However, it is a defence in court if the accused possesses such precursors for;
It is illegal to cultivate Cannabis for a commercial purpose using any artificial or indoor means. It is an offence that incurs penalties of up to 15 years imprisonment if more than five cannabis plants were cultivated at the time.
However, the argument of the prosecution must be water-tight to prove that the accused person intended to commercialise the cultivation.
Cultivating Cannabis indoor does not necessarily mean in a closed space; it includes engaging in any of the following actions;
The offence of enhanced cultivation of Cannabis plant incurs penalties ranging;
It is a matter of aggravation for a person to commit the offence before a child. Depending on the quantity of prohibited plant cultivated, the punishments for such aggravation can range between
The primary determinant in the severity of a drug offence involving Cannabis is the amount of Cannabis leaf or supplement found in the person's possession.
The quantities that distinguish cannabis offences under NSW law are as follows;
Cannabis offences in NSW can either be treated summarily in a Magistrate (Local) court or indictably in a higher court (District) Court. The Smaller courts usually hear smaller cannabis offences and impose penalties not more significant than two years imprisonment.
The court may also substitute these penalties for fines where it considers an imprisonment term too harsh for the offence.
However, for commercial or above dealings with Cannabis, only a District court or similar can handle such matters.
For all other quantities of Cannabis that constituted the offence, the DPP or the accused can prefer to have the matter dealt with in a District court. Where there is no election for such, the matter will proceed normally in a Local Court.
Cannabis is a regulated and controlled drug in NSW and cannot be moved without compulsory licenses or permissions. Division 307 of the Commonwealth Criminal Code Act prohibits the import or export of Cannabis within NSW.
Like all other cannabis offences, the penalties depend on the amount of Cannabis that is imported or exported. The penalties can range between;
It is a serious matter to be convicted by a District court of a cannabis offence; it means you were convicted for an indictable matter. The punishments such courts can impose range between;
If an individual is found guilty of a cannabis offence in NSW, the offence will show up as a disclosable court outcome (DCO) on the results of their national police clearance check.
Individuals can obtain a police check online via the Australian National Character Check - ANCC® website.
Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW) - https://legislation.nsw.gov.au/view/html/inforce/current/act-1985-226
Judicial Commission of NSW (Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW) Offences) - https://www.judcom.nsw.gov.au/publications/benchbks/sentencing/drug_misuse_and_trafficking_act.html
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