Drug Offences

In South Australia the non-medical use of drugs is regulated by both State and Commonwealth legislation.

State legislation

The majority of drug offences are charged under state legislation, that is, the Controlled Substances Act 1984 (SA). This Act regulates the manufacture, production, sale, supply, possession, handling or use of certain poisons, drugs, therapeutic and other substances. It is a complex piece of legislation but it broadly distinguishes between users, who face lesser penalties, and producers or suppliers who in general face greater penalties.

For a comprehensive summary of offences and penalties under the Controlled Substances Act 1984 (SA) as at October 2014, click here.

Commonwealth legislation

The relevant Commonwealth legislation is contained in the Customs Act 1901(Cth) , the Narcotic Drugs Act 1967 (Cth) and the Psychotropic Substances Act 1976 (Cth) . However, in daily practice only the Customs Act 1901 (Cth) is likely to be encountered. The Customs Act 1901 (Cth) is concerned with the movement and control of goods into and out of Australia and also contains many offences not related to drugs.

Drug Offences  :  Last Revised: Mon Dec 19th 2016
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