The right advice
Drug possession is one of several types of drug charges available in NSW. Without the right information about how section 10 might apply to your particular case, valuable opportunities might be missed. Here, we set out the basic nature and uses of section 10, and provide our tips for preparing your best defence in a drug possession matter.
Benefits of a section 10 for drug possession in NSW
Drug possession penalties may include having a conviction recorded. However, under section 10 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act, it is possible for the court to refrain from recording a conviction.
No mere dismissal
The court has a number of options, should the decision be made to deal with your drug possession charge under section 10. In ideal circumstances, the court can exercise its discretion to not record a conviction and dismiss the charge under section 10.
That is, even though you have pleaded guilty the court can decide that no criminal conviction will be entered on your record. On other occasions, the dismissal can be accompanied by a good behaviour bond, or some form of intervention program. Either way, there will be no recording of a criminal conviction.
Know your defences
Yet – this is the law. It’s never simple! Your personal circumstances, health, and prior good character may all be relevant and can be put forward. For example, the court might be able to take into account your age, or even a mental condition, if these are relevant to the drug possession charge. One other element for the judge to consider is the potentially trivial nature of the offence. In a drug possession charge, this could come down to an issue such as negligible quantity of a substance.
Explaining your case
Section 10 considerations can also be broader than these. The law gives the court ample room to consider extenuating circumstances or other factors that they consider important. You might be able to demonstrate special issues that impact either the charge, or the potential conviction.
How can we help?
It’s important to seek expert advice about getting a section 10. We have vast experience in getting section 10’s for our clients across a range of matters including drug possession.
Contact us if you need help.