The offence of Possess prohibited weapon is found at section 7 of the Weapons Prohibition Act 1988.
Possess prohibited weapon offences are often successfully defended where the weapon is not found in the immediate custody of a person as it is difficult for police to prove a person knew a weapon was in an area or vehicle used by more than one person. It may also be possible to dispute possession of a weapon where DNA or fingerprints are in dispute or located elsewhere than on the weapon itself.
If you are charged with the offence of Possess prohibited weapon, your options will normally be to plead guilty or not guilty.
Pleading not guilty
You will be found not guilty of the offence of Possess prohibited weapon if the police cannot prove beyond reasonable doubt:
- You knowingly possessed a prohibited weapons.
- You were not authorised to do.
Click here for a list of prohibited weapons.
Possession of a weapon includes any case in which a person knowingly has custody of the weapon, or has the weapon in the custody of another person, or has the weapon in or on any premises, place, vehicle, vessel or aircraft, whether or not belonging to or occupied by the person.
Where the police allege you had exclusive possession of a weapon but the weapon is found in a communal place, police must negate possession on the part of any other person, e.g. other occupants of the house which you live or in a car to which multiple people had access.
If the police are able to prove the above elements beyond reasonable doubt, you will still be found not guilty if any of the following defences can be established:
Contact our offices in Sydney or Blacktown to organise a time for one of our criminal lawyers to advise you of your prospects of successfully defending the charge of Possess prohibited weapon.
If you agree that you have committed the offence (and the police are able to prove so), it is best to plead guilty as you will normally receive a discount on sentence and it will demonstrate remorse and contrition. Alternatively, it may be the case that one of our experienced solicitors can negotiate with prosecutors for you to plead guilty to less serious facts or even a less serious charge.
Possess prohibited firearm, carries a maximum penalty of 2 years imprisonment in the Local Court and 14 years imprisonment in the District Court; however, these penalties are typically reserved for the worst offenders. Possess prohibited weapon is a serious offence and if you are charged with it you should contact our office immediately.
Penalties that a court can impose in NSW are: