If you have been charged with a drug offence, then you will be in good hands at Craven Criminal Lawyers. A lot of the work we undertake involves representing clients who have been charged with drug charges. We represent clients who have been charged with a wide variety of drug offences, ranging from simple possession offences to drug trafficking.
Drug offences are taken very serious by the Courts and the penalties handed down by the Courts can often involve actual time in prison.
If you ultimately decide to plead guilty to a drug charge, our job is to attempt to reduce the penalty the Court ultimately imposes.
Below are examples of the types of drug offences our criminal defence lawyers can help you with.
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TYPES OF DRUG CHARGES OUR
CRIMINAL LAWYERS HELP CLIENTS WITH
POSSESSING A DANGEROUS DRUG
It is a crime to unlawfully possess a dangerous drug under Section 9 of the Drugs Misuse Act (Qld).
Possession involves the physical control or custody of the dangerous drug, with the offender knowing that they have the physical control or custody of the dangerous drug. The prosecution does not need to prove that the offender knew the item was a dangerous drug.
If the dangerous drug was located in, or at place the offender occupies or manages or controls (e.g. their home) section 129(1)(c) of the Drugs Misuse Act (Qld) deems them to be in possession of the dangerous drug. An offender can rebut this presumption if they can demonstrate that they neither knew nor had reason to suspect that the drug was in or on the place.
Dangerous drugs are identified in schedules 1, 2 and 5 of the Drugs Misuse Regulation (Qld). For example, Schedule 1 of the Drugs Misuse Regulation (Qld) states Schedule 1 dangerous drugs include, but are not limited to:
♦ 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA).
♦ Paramethoxyamphetamine (PMA).
♦ Paramethoxymethamphetamine (PMMA).
The maximum penalty for this offence ranges from 15 years imprisonment to 25 years imprisonment. The maximum penalty depends on the what the dangerous drug is (whether it is a Schedule 1, 2 or 5 drug) and the pure weight of the drug.
SUPPLYING A DANGEROUS DRUG
It is a crime for an person to unlawfully supply a dangerous drug to another person under section 6 of the Drugs Misuse Act (Qld).
What constitutes “supplying” a dangerous drug to a person includes many things, because of the wide definition of “supply” under the Drugs Misuse Act (Qld).
The Drugs Misuse Act (Qld) defines “supply” as:
(a) giving, distributing, selling, administering, transporting or supplying; or
(b) offering to give, distribute, sell, administer, transport or supply; or
(c) doing or offering to do any act preparatory to, in furtherance of, or for the purpose of giving, distributing, selling, administering, transporting or supplying.
Because of the above definition, a supply can occur in situations where a person offers to give a person a dangerous drug. There does not need to be any physical drug handed from one person to another. The mere offer to give a person a dangerous drug is sufficient for the police to prove the crime.
The maximum penalty for the offence ranges from 15 years imprisonment to Life Imprisonment.
TRAFFICKING IN A DANGEROUS DRUG
It is a crime for a person to unlawfully carry on the business of trafficking in a dangerous drug under section 5 of the Drugs Misuse Act (Qld).
The Drugs Misuse Act (Qld) does not provide a definition of what it means to “carry on a business”. Generally, there does need to be more than one sale of a dangerous drug. The Courts have outlined things that can be used to demonstrate a person “carried on a business”, which include evidence of the offender: –
- Having customers who purchased the drug.
- Advertising drugs for sale (e.g. on the Internet on such websites as Craigslist, SMS text messages or other messaging services such as FaceBook).
- Selling drugs.
- Arranging to receive or deliver drugs.
- Negotiating to purchase drugs.
- Communicating with potential buyers.
There does not need to be an exchange of money for there to be a business.
The Courts have identified that trafficking conveys the notion of trading in or dealing with and to mean to knowingly engage in the movement of dangerous drugs from the supplier to the end user.
The maximum penalty for this crime is 25 years imprisonment.
PRODUCING A DANGEROUS DRUG
It is a crime to unlawfully produce a dangerous drug under Section 8 of the Drugs Misuse Act (Qld).
Produce is defined in the Drugs Misuse Act (Qld) to include:
(a) prepare, manufacture, cultivate, package or produce; or
(b) offering to prepare, manufacture, cultivate, package or produce; or
(c) doing or offering to do any act preparatory to, in furtherance of, or for the purpose of preparing, manufacturing, cultivating, packaging or producing.
Because of the wide definition of “produce”, the offence can be committed even in circumstances where there is no end product. For example, if an offender had possession of the necessary chemicals and glassware to produce amphetamine, this may be sufficient to prove a charge of producing a dangerous drug.
The maximum penalty for this offence will range from 15 years imprisonment to 25 years imprisonment depending on the dangerous drug and the quantity of the drug produced.
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