When Can Police Take Your Phone?

NSW Police are often seizing mobile phones (and other items) from people suspected of crimes, including those that are bystanders, who record an incident which they are not even involved in. The digital era, with the regular use of smart phones, which allow people to record footage and photos wherever and whenever, has resulted in ...continue reading

10 Things to Know When Approached by Police at a Music Festival

Charged with a Drug Possession offence is daunting. It carries a maximum penalty of up to 2 years imprisonment and/or a penalty of up to $2,200 fine. It can also result in a criminal conviction, impacting on your future. There are also certain things you can do, if going to court, for a drug possession ...continue reading

NSW Government Passes Laws to Encourage Early Guilty Pleas

73% of criminal cases result in the accused pleading guilty to serious criminal charges. 23% of people accused of a serious criminal offence are entering a guilty plea at a late stage of the case. Particularly on the day of trial in the District Court. For serious criminal cases, from when a case starts in ...continue reading

The Difference Between Summary, Indictable & Strictly Indictable Offences

There are two types of main charges in NSW labelled as “indictable offences”, and “summary offences”. The period of time your case will take in court to finalise, whether police are still allowed to prosecute you for an offence that occurred more than 6 months ago, and the seriousness of the penalties you are faced ...continue reading

New Penalties to be Introduced in NSW

Evidence establishes that community supervision and programs are much more effective at changing offenders behaviour to reduce reoffending. In fact, sending offenders to prison for less than 2 years have not been effective in trying to change behaviour in offenders generally. A number of significant changes in NSW penalties have been proposed, and it will ...continue reading

Should Australia Follow Portugal’s Policy of Decriminalising Drug Possession?

Why Doesn’t Australia Follow Portugal’s Radical Drugs Policy – Decriminalisation of Drugs? Writer and producer, Susan Ferreira, in her article in the guardian, states that since the decriminalisation of all drugs in 2001, Portugal has seen a dramatic drop in overdoses, HIV infection and drug related crime. The article expresses that Portugal was in a state ...continue reading

Spent Convictions

A criminal conviction is something that can generally impact on your ability to gain employment and travel overseas. Although not many are aware, generally, a convicted person is not required to disclose, for any purpose, any information about his or her conviction, if that conviction is “spent”. In addition to this, a question concerning your ...continue reading

Are People with Criminal Convictions Allowed to Associate with Each Other?

What is Habitual Consorting and it’s Penalties? Habitual Consorting carries a maximum penalty of imprisonment of up to 3 years and/or a fine of up to $16,500. Under s 93X Crimes Act 1900 (NSW), it is a criminal offence to: Habitually Consort with convicted offenders, after receiving an official warning in relation to each of ...continue reading

How to Avoid a Conviction After Pleading Guilty to a Drug Offence

A section 10 dismissal, soon to be known (from 2018) as conditional release orders (CRO), is a type of punishment a Court can give if your found guilty for a criminal charge. This includes offences of possession or supply of prohibited drugs in NSW. A punishment of this kind from a Magistrate or Judge means ...continue reading

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