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Possessing a Precursor to Manufacture or Produce a Prohibited Drug

Possessing a Precursor to Manufacture or Produce a Prohibited Drug is an offence under section 24A(1)(a) of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison if the case is finalised in a higher court such as the District Court, or 2 years if the case remains in the Local Court.

To establish the offence, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that:

  1. You possessed a precursor, and
  2. You intended to use the precursor in the manufacture or production of a prohibited drug.

Schedules 1 and 2 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Regulation 2011 contain lists of prescribed precursors, which include:

  1. Ephedrine
  2. Pseudoephedrine
  3. Phenylacetamide
  4. Lysergic acid, and
  5. Hydriodic acid.

You are not guilty if you were licensed or authorised to manufacture or produce the intended prohibited drug under the Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 1966, or were acting under a poppy licence issued through the Poppy Industry Act 2016, or were acting under authority granted by the Director General of the Ministry of Health.

Duress and necessity are defences to the charge.

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