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The illegal use of Cannabis in WA is a criminal offence that incurs penalties. There are also mandatory sentencing punishments for certain cultivating crimes, especially in aggravating circumstances.
Cannabis and other drug offences in WA are regulated under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1981 (WA). The Act describes Cannabis as marijuana, ganja, dope, pot, grass, hashish and other names relating to the area. For any form of Cannabis; Leaf, Cigarettes, Resins or other conditions, it is illegal to deal with Cannabis in any form.
Dealing with Cannabis offences has improved under the new laws (2011 Amendments) with the new Cannabis Intervention Requirement (CIR) for those who possess minor quantities.
If an individual is convicted in a Western Australian court for a cannabis offence, the offence will show up as a disclosable court outcome (DCO) on a Western Australian Criminal History Check certificate.
A CIR is a notice reflecting the regulations; it contains an excellent description of the alleged offence and offences.
Also, the CIR must contain;
Cannabis Intervention Requirement (CIR) programs are issued under section 8E of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1981 (WA) and are common where the Police officer or any other person in charge believes the offence to be minor and less deserving of a court summons. A CIR may also be issued even where the Police officer believes the accused;
The offender should get the CIR as soon as practicable, usually within 60 days of the offence.
A CIR cannot be issued to adult offenders who received a minor cannabis-related offence or already got a CIR.
There are special recommendations for when the offender is/was a young person. Section 8G of the Act lists some special conditions in issuing a CIR to offenders. The CIR cannot be issued to a person that is;
Subsection 2 gives direction for an officer issuing a CIR to a young person to do so;
A young person who receives 2 or more CIR will only need to complete a single CIS regarding the CIR. However, the CIRs must be given before completing the running CIS.
The CIR/CIS participation does not appear in a criminal record check, nor does it qualify as a future legal reference.
Only simple cannabis or drug offences are handled using the Cannabis Intervention Scheme. Cannabis offences, especially those dealing with commercial quantities, are punished by penalties stipulated under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1981 (WA).
It includes where a person who has legal authority over premises as a manager, caretaker, occupier, and so on, allows the premised to be used in;
Dealing with a prohibited drug is a serious offense in WA. Guilty persons will be prosecuted depending on the number of drugs they handled within the period. A person has committed such offence if they;
Unless they are authorised by the Medicines and Poisons Act 2014 (WA), the person may be guilty of a simple offence under the law.
It is an offence under section 7 of the Act for a person to;
A person commits a simple offence if they cultivate simple plants under WA laws.
The offence of selling/supplying a material/equipment used in hydroponic cultivation of a prohibited plant
Section 7A of the Act describes an offence where a person sells, supplies material, or offers to do so while they know it will be used to cultivate a prohibited plant.
This section describes an indictable offence carrying higher penalties than other cannabis offences in WA. The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in WA may also implore the Court to impose a prohibited period for the individual.
Section 7B of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1981 (WA) describes drug paraphernalia as anything that aids the ingestion, intake or administration of Cannabis or other substances. A person who displays such for sale in retail commits a simple offence.
However, it is a defence for this case if the accused person;
Subsection 6 condemns a person holding drug paraphernalia with a prohibited plant/substance in it. It is a simple offence that incurs;
A person guilty of these offences (s6 & s7) of the Act commits a crime that incurs penalties of;
There are certain offences and acts where the Court must impose a minimum sentencing (imprisonment) for the offender. Section 34 of the Act describes these Acts as aggravating circumstances for drug offences.
Where an adult knowingly or recklessly supplies a prohibited drug to a child, they are guilty of a severe offence that follows the following sentencing.
Imprisonment term for at least six months that cannot be suspended.
It is an offence to engage in the cultivation of Cannabis in a manner that puts a child at risk. The risk could be in the form of the child's health, life, or safety, and where the child is under 16 at the time. It is an offence that incurs;
The Act stipulates a repeat offender to receive a minimum sentencing of 6 months for this offence. And the sentencing cannot be suspended under the normal laws.
Where cultivation causes bodily harm to a child either through the intentional or reckless act of the accused, it is an imprisonment of at least 12 months. It includes where the child is under 16 at the time of the offence.
Also, It is a severe offence for a person to possess above the regulated quantity of Cannabis or other drugs in their vehicle.
Punishments for drug driving offences include;
Even when the Court does not find a person guilty of an offence, it can sentence them for another offence if the evidence proves it.
The Court can commit a charge to a simple offence if the evidence proves the person was not guilty of the indictable crime in WA. The Supreme or District court can, in that regard, impose the prescribed penalties for simple offences
Section 8S of the of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1981 (WA) permits some police to enter a premise where they reasonably suspect that;
If you receive a court summons for a drug charge, you must employ the services of a lawyer. There are many options/arguments your legal counsel can take;
If an individual is found guilty of a cannabis offence in WA, 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.
Misuse of Drugs Act 1981 (WA) - https://www.legislation.wa.gov.au/legislation/statutes.nsf/main_mrtitle_609_homepage.html
Medicines and Poisons Act 2014 (WA) - https://www.legislation.wa.gov.au/legislation/statutes.nsf/main_mrtitle_13172_homepage.html
Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA) - https://www.legislation.wa.gov.au/legislation/statutes.nsf/main_mrtitle_848_homepage.html
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