Case facts

Pulled over for random drug testing – failed the roadside lick test; passed the second test but the stored sample revealed the presence of a drug. The client was therefore facing drug driving charges.


Case result

Ultimately dismissed under section 10 Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act after a plea of guilty.

The offence carries an automatic disqualfication period of 6 months and a fine of up to $1,100. It also carries a criminal record on conviction.

In this case, the amount of drug left in the client’s saliva 4 days after using amphetmine was just enough to register on the lick test which then gave the police the right to conduct the second test. The second test reading at the scene was ‘negative’ – ie no drug detected. However, the police seal part of the sample and send it off to the analytical laboratory for analysis. On this test, it showed the presence of amphetamine.

Obviously the amount of amphetamine in the system was negligible and certainly having no affect at all upon the client’s driving skills. However, the point of this law is not to punish those with so much of a drug in their system that it affects their driving – it is to punish drug users who drive – even if it is days later.

You could for example smoke cannabis weeks prior to being pulled over for random drug testing, and still have a traceable quantity in your saliva. For this, you could be branded a criminal upon conviction.


Nyman Gibson Miralis provides expert advice and representation in all areas of drink driving and traffic law. 

Contact us if you require assistance.