What is the law that governs the supply of prohibited drugs in Australia?
All offences pertaining to the supply of prohibited drugs in NSW are criminalised by the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW) (‘the Act’).
The act of “drug supply” encompasses situations where an individual is involved in the sale or distribution of drugs.
However, the definition of supply is broad to include “to give or provide”.
Any person who participates in any part of this process can be charged for the offence of drug supply.
To ‘supply’ includes:
- To sell or distribute,
- To agree or offer to supply,
- The keep or possess for supply,
- The send, forward, deliver or receive for supply, or
- To authorise, direct, cause, suffer, permit or attempt any of the above
Knowingly taking part in supply involves;
- Taking or participating in any step of the supply process, or causing any such step to be taken,
- Providing or arranging finance for any step in the supply process, or
- Providing the premises for any step in the supply proves, or suffering or permitting any such step to be taken in a premises for which the person is the owner, lessee, occupier or manager.
What must be proved ?
The police are required to prove that the accused both supplied a prohibited drug, and knowingly took part in the supply of a prohibited drug.
The Crown must prove the following three elements to prove that a person engaged in the offence of supplying prohibited drugs:
- That [the accused] supplied a substance
- The substance was a prohibited drug, and
- [the accused] knew that what was supplied was a prohibited drug.
A prohibited drug according to the definitions in the act, means any substance which is contained in Schedule 1 of the act.
Common prohibited drugs are cannabis, heroin, ecstasy, amphetamines, LSD, cocaine, methadone and many others.