Category: Drug Possession

Indictable Drug Supply Cases Can Now be Finalised in the Local Court


Until recently, cases of drug supply which involved more than the ‘indictable quantity’ but less than the commercial quantity could not be finalised in the NSW Local Court – they were ‘strictly indictable’ which meant they had to be committed to a higher court such as the District Court to be dealt with – whether by ...

SA Liberals Intensify War Against Cannabis Users


Recreational cannabis will be legalised nationwide in Canada on 17 October. In the US, smoking pot is now permitted in nine states. And back in April, Australian Greens leader Richard Di Natale launched a campaign calling for the plant to be legalised in this country. However, South Australian attorney general Vickie Chapman hasn’t been paying attention. Last ...

Medically Supervised Injecting Centre to Open in Melbourne


By Zeb Holmes and Ugur Nedim In the wake of 34 deaths by overdose in the North Richmond local council area in 2015 alone, the Victorian state government responded to community calls for a safe injecting room late last year by approving a two-year trial. Victoria’s first medically supervised injecting centre (MSIC) is scheduled to ...

Canada Set to Legalise Recreational Cannabis


By Zeb Holmes and Ugur Nedim Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced that recreational cannabis will become legal throughout the country on October 17. Both houses of parliament have voted to repeal drug charges for small possession and limited cultivation, making Canada the first G7 country and the second country in the world to ...

Australia Pioneered Drug Harm Reduction and Must Continue


Programs, strategies and policies designed to prevent or reduce the harms associated with the use of illicit substances are collectively known as harm reduction. This approach to drug use has been a key pillar of Australia’s National Drug Strategy since its first iteration in 1985. With the HIV/AIDS crisis looming in the mid-80s, it became ...

Challenging Abuse of Police Powers: An Interview With Greens MLC David Shoebridge


The NSW police use of drug detections dog in public places without a warrant has been widely discredited in the public eye. The damning NSW Ombudsman report into the program was released as far back as 2006. NSW Greens MLC David Shoebridge makes clear that up to 75 percent of times that people are searched after a ...

Magistrate’s Rebuke of “Privileged” Drug Takers Was Misguided


Magistrate Robyn Denes chastised a number of young professionals from privileged backgrounds that appeared before her in Burwood Local Court on drug charges last week. The magistrate warned that these women can’t hide behind their “social fortune for too long.” As reported by news.com.au, the women, including a nurse, a recruiter and a bank loan provider, ...

Drug Driving Laws Criminalise the Legal Use of Cannabis


By Paul Gregoire and Ugur Nedim The Berejiklian government announced in January that NSW police are set to more than double the number of roadside drug tests they conduct from 97,000 to 200,000 a year by 2020. And along with more tests, another drug will be added to the list that officers test for. As of ...

Can NSW Police Exclude Patrons Based on a Positive Drug Indication Alone?


There is an enormous amount of evidence to suggest that positive indications by drug detection dogs are not a reliable indicator of the presence of drugs. Police figures suggest that between two-thirds and eighty percent of positive indications are ‘false’ – meaning the subject does not have drugs on them at the time. There are ...

Premier Wants Sniffer Dogs in Schools


By Paul Gregoire and Ugur Nedim The present heavy-handed approach to illicit drug use has been widely been discredited by former police commissioners, politicians and health professionals. Instead of curbing the use of the illegal drugs, it’s accepted it increases the harms associated with substance use. However, newly appointed South Australian premier Steven Marshall has decided ...