South Australia

Which drugs are illegal?

In South Australia, illegal drugs are called controlled drugs and illegal plants are called controlled plants.

The definition of “controlled drugs” extends to include substances which are chemical analogues of, or chemically related to, listed controlled drugs.

This may mean that new, synthetic type drugs which are chemically derived from, or related to a controlled drug will also be illegal, even if it is not specifically listed in the schedules.

Controlled drugs Controlled Plants
  • Heroin
  • Cannabis
  • THC cannibinols
  • Cathinone (Mephedrone, MCAT, meow)
  • PCE
  • PCP
  • LSD
  • Ecstasy/MDMA
  • DMT
  • GHB
  • Meth-amphetamine (ice/speed)
  • Mescaline
  • Morphine
  • Methadone
  • Ketamine
  • Amphetamine
  • Dexamphetamine
  • Buprenorphine
  • Cocaine
  • This list is not the full list. All substances listed in Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances (Controlled Drugs, Precursors And Plants) Regulations 2000 are illegal under the heading “Part 1 – Controlled drugs other than drugs of dependence” and “Part 2 -Controlled drugs”.
  • Cannabis
  • Magic Mushrooms
  • Lopophora cactus (mescaline)
  • Opium poppies
  • Salvia Divinorum
  • This list is not the full list. All substances listed in Schedule 3 of the Controlled Substances (Controlled Drugs, Precursors And Plants) Regulations 2000 under the heading “Part 1 – Controlled plants other than cannabis plants” and “Part 2 –Cannabis plants”.

General information

Knowledge of the particular drug

For offences involving controlled drugs or controlled plants in South Australia the police generally have to prove that you knew, or should have known, that the drugs or plants were controlled drugs or controlled plants.

They don’t need to prove you knew which particular controlled drug or plant you had in your possession. This means, for example that you can be charged with trafficking in speed, even if you incorrectly believed that you were selling a legal synthetic substance (which was actually illegal).

If you hold out or pass off a substance or plant as a controlled drug or plant, for the purpose of supply, you can still face the same penalties as if it were a controlled drug. This means, that you can be charged with suppling cocaine even if you are just trying to rip someone off, for example, by selling him or her icing sugar.

Mixtures of drugs and trafficking

A mixture of substances which contains an amount of a controlled drug will be regarded as an illegal drug. This means that if you sell cocaine cut up with washing powder you can still be charged.

Rules for determining total quantities of different drugs or mixtures of drugs for the purpose of determining which offence you will be charged with, which Court your case will be heard in, and what penalty you face on conviction, are very complicated.

SA uses a mixed weight system of calculating threshold quantities for trafficking.

SA police and prosecutors take the total weight of the seized drug sample (e.g., pills, tablets, caps, points, joints, mixtures, or preparations) to be the total quantity of the controlled drug when charging you.

The purity of the drugs is not relevant when determining what quantity of drug you possess and therefore what charge you face in court (e.g., possession for personal use or trafficking).

This means that it doesn’t matter how pure your drugs or drug mixtures are. The prosecution only has to show that the weight of the pills, tablets, caps, points, joints, or other mixture is greater than the trafficable quantity for you to be charged with trafficking.

Aggregated quantities of drugs and trafficking

In SA if you are found to be supplying or trafficking on various occasions within 7 days, or in the course of carrying out organised criminal activity, the separate charges can be heard as a single offence. Amounts of different drugs can be added (aggregated) into a single offence charge.

The law specifies that where the required fraction of each drug you are found with, adds up to a whole number greater than 1, you will be charged with an offence based on a higher aggregated quantity. For example, if you are charged with trafficking a number of different drugs, the prosecution will calculate the ‘required fractions’ of the quantity of each pure drug by dividing the amount of the pure drug you traffic with the smallest specified ‘trafficable’ or ‘commercial’ or ‘large commercial’ quantity.

For example if you traffic 1g of heroin and the trafficable quantity is 2g the prosecution will divide 1 by 2 to give a fraction of ½. If you are also found trafficking 1.5g of ice where the trafficable quantity is 2g the prosecution will divide 1.5 by 2 to give a fraction of ¾. The prosecution would then add ½ plus ¾ to give 1¼ which is greater than 1. So you would be charged with a single offence of trafficking a trafficable quantity of a controlled drug, even though separately the quantities were each less than the trafficable quantity.

Does the harm of the drug matter?

No. The perceived harm potential of a drug is NOT relevant to determining which offence you will be charged with (or the quantity you were alleged to traffic). A court might take your motives and aggravating circumstances (see ‘Aggravating circumstances’ section below) into account when sentencing you for an offence, but certain controlled drugs should not be treated as more or less harmful than others.

For example, if you possess 5g of heroin, and your friend possesses 5g of cocaine in the same circumstances, you should both be subject to the same charge of trafficking and receive a similar penalty. You should not be punished more severely for possessing drugs like heroin or ice, which are considered to be ‘really harmful’, ‘more evil’ or ‘harder drugs’ than for ‘party drugs’ like cocaine or ecstasy.

You should not be punished more severely for some drugs than for others based only on a ‘scale’ of the perceived harm of different drugs.

General charges for being involved in a drug offence

Generally, if you help or assist someone else to plan or carry out a drug offence, you are also committing an offence by being involved. You can be charged with:

  • taking part in an offence if you are involved in the offence even if you don’t make any profit from the offence (e.g., you pack or transport or manufacture or cultivate an illegal drug or plant; or provide finance or direction for the offence);
  • being an accessory to an offence if you are involved in the offence without directly handling or dealing with the drugs (e.g., by being security or a guard or a look out for a drug deal);
  • aiding and abetting or inciting an offence if you encourage or induce or provide incentives for a person to commit a drug offence (e.g., tell someone they can use your shed to grow cannabis in); or
  • conspiracy to commit, or attempting to commit an offence if you intend to, or plan, or make preparations, or try to commit an offence.

Generally police will not charge you with additional charges such as being an accessory to supply if you are a user and arrange to score off a dealer. However you can still be charged with possession or trafficking depending on how much you buy and where you buy it.

Possession

It is an offence to possess a controlled drug, unless the controlled drug has been lawfully prescribed or supplied to you.

Proving possession

There are three elements required to prove possession: knowledge, custody and control.

  • Knowledge means that you must know that the substance is a drug and that it is in your custody. In South Australia the prosecution does not need to prove that you knew which drug you used or were in possession of. They only have to prove that you were reckless or believed in the circumstances that you had possession of any controlled drug;
  • Custody usually means having the drugs in your physical possession (for example, in your pocket or wallet or under your pillow). However, custody can also extend to include such places as your house or car; and
  • Control means that you have the right to do something with the drugs (for example, keep or use them). If there are drugs in your house but they do not belong to you and you don’t have any control over them, you are not in possession of them.

Knowledge

Knowledge that a drug is in your possession can be inferred from the circumstances. That is, if you have a drug in your pocket or in your room, the Court will infer you knew what it was.

Knowledge can be based on personal observation or information from another person. In other circumstances it does not have to be firm or absolutely certain. In some cases, awareness that something is highly likely to be a drug, or proof that there was a real and significant chance that a substance was a drug is enough to demonstrate knowledge.

There will be circumstances where, if you don’t admit to owning the drugs or knowing about them, possession will be difficult to prove to the court as required by the law.

Do not admit to possessing drugs without speaking to a lawyer!

Custody and joint possession

Generally if you live in a shared house and get caught with drugs in a common area like the kitchen or lounge room, it may be difficult for police to establish exactly who owned and had custody or control of the drugs, unless people make admissions.

The police must prove more than the facts that you knew drugs were there and that you didn’t report the drugs or object to them being there. Therefore if you share a house and police find drugs in non-private parts of the house (say, the kitchen, lounge room or bathroom), it can be difficult to establish who has the sole custody or control of the drugs.

However it is not impossible for police to prove that possession was jointly held. Possession can be shared between people if there was agreement between them, (for example, say you and your flatmates have a stash that you all have access to). Shared, or joint possession is generally hard to prove if no one admits to owning the drugs.

Possession without physical custody

In some circumstances it may be possible to find you in possession of a drug even if it was not physically in your custody. For example if you know you have a package of drugs waiting for you in the post office which only you can pick up that will be enough to establish possession because you are the only person who can obtain the drugs.

If you have drugs in a bag or coat pocket which you check into a cloak room outside a club, you can still be found to be in possession, because you would be the only person with knowledge of the drug and the ability to control it when you retrieved your bag or coat. A conviction in these circumstances is possible, but it would be difficult for the prosecution to rule out the possibility that someone else had planted drugs there.

Similarly, if police find drugs under the tarp in your ute tray, or locked in the boot of your car, but you don’t have the keys with you at that time, police may not be able to show that you had custody and control.

You can be charged with possession if you hid a drug somewhere and forgot about it. The police do not have to prove you knew exactly where the drugs were for them to be found in your possession.

If you are proved to have hidden or concealed a drug so well that no one else could find it and exercise control over it that will be enough to show you had knowledge, custody and control, even though you weren’t in physical possession when the drugs were found.

Control

Control may be proved if there is evidence that a person had done or intended to do something with a drug. If someone leaves drugs on your balcony or in your car and police see you throwing the drugs away this might be enough evidence that you exercised control over the drugs.

However, if someone leaves drugs in your house after a party and you know they are there but police cannot prove that you ever did anything or intended to do anything with the drugs, except throw them out, possession might not be proved.

Temporary possession

Possession can be found even if it is momentary or temporary. If you get passed a joint from someone you can be found to be in possession of the joint.

If you are looking after drugs for someone else, you can still be found guilty of possession, because the drugs are in your custody and control. However, if you can prove that the possession was temporary and that you intended to return the drugs to their actual owner, you might not be convicted of possession. This is known as the ‘Carey defence’.

Possession for the purpose of supply (as opposed to personal use) is a much more serious offence. For further information see the section on “Supply”.

Penalties

Possession of a controlled drug (for your own personal use) is a summary offence, which means it is dealt with by the Local Court, or Children’s Court.

Maximum penalty: $2000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.

Use and administration

Use, consumption or self-administration of a controlled drug is an offence. It is also an offence to administer drugs which you have obtained lawfully, such as prescription drugs like codeine, Valium (diazepam), Dexamphetamine, benzodiazepines, buprenorphine and methadone without following the doctor’s or pharmacist’s directions for use. This means that it is illegal to inject methadone, because prescriptions for methadone are based on an oral dose.

Maximum penalty:

  • for cannabis (leaf, oil or hash resin): $500.
  • for any other controlled drug: $2000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.

Charges of self-administration are difficult to prove without someone making an admission combined with some other evidence (for example, evidence of prior drug use or knowledge about drugs) Sometimes the police don’t bother to charge people with self-administration, even if an admission has been made. However, you should be careful of what you say to the police.

If, for example, you meet police on your way home after smoking a joint in the park and they ask you if you have been smoking don’t admit to it. This would give police the reasonable suspicion that you are in possession they need to search you. If they find some cannabis on you that might give them grounds to get a warrant to search your house. Admitting that you have used drugs recently can quickly lead to more serious drug charges.

Do not admit to using drugs without speaking to a lawyer!

Administering or helping another person use a controlled drug or plant is an offence. It is also an offence to have possession of a controlled drug or plant with the intention of administering it to another person. Administration can include taking a drug orally or by inhaling or ingesting smoke or injecting a drug. This means it is illegal to inject another person even if they have asked you to or given you consent.

Maximum penalty:

  • for cannabis (leaf, oil or hash resin): $2000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.
  • for any other controlled drug: $50,000 and/or imprisonment for 10 years.

If you administer a prohibited drug to another person who subsequently dies from an overdose (‘OD’) you could be charged with manslaughter. Nevertheless if you are using with someone who overdoses you should call an ambulance. Police have guidelines about attendance at overdoses to ensure that people who overdose or witness an OD are not discouraged from seeking medical assistance.

Police will not normally attend an overdose in South Australia unless:

  • they are requested to do so by ambulance paramedics or medical personnel (because ambulance officers cannot control people present at the scene or due to a threat of violence);
  • a death has occurred or there are suspicious circumstances (like attempted murder);
  • they were the first on the scene; or
  • the OD occurred in a ‘flagged area’ which means the ambulance service has identified the area as a dangerous area or an area where violence has occurred in the past, so that police are automatically sent when a call for assistance in that area is logged.

Police guidelines direct police who do attend an overdose to use their discretion not to charge people at the scene or the person who overdoses with administration or other minor drug offences such as possession.

Supply

It is an offence to supply a controlled drug without lawful authority. Supply has a very broad definition and you could be guilty of an offence even if no drugs or money change hands.

Supply can include:

  • offering or agreeing to supply, even if no deal ever takes place;
  • being knowingly concerned in supply, for example, introducing someone to a dealer;
  • supplying a legal substance that you claim is a prohibited drug, for example, selling aspirin and passing it off as heroin;
  • pooling money and splitting up purchased drugs between the group of buyers;
  • having drugs in your possession for the purpose of supply.

If you are caught with drugs in your possession, police are more likely to charge you with supply if they find things like scales, deal bags, and cash.

A charge of supply can even rest on an offer to score on behalf of your mates, or sharing your gear with other people. It doesn’t matter whether or not there is any money involved.

It is an offence to supply or to have possession for the purposes of supplying a controlled drug or plant.

Maximum penalty:

  • for cannabis (leaf, oil or hash resin): $2000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.
  • for any other controlled drug: $50,000 and/or imprisonment for 10 years.

Trafficking

Trafficking in a controlled drug is an offence. Trafficking has a wide meaning in South Australia.

You can be charged with trafficking in a controlled drug if you –

  • sell the drug;
  • take part in the process of a sale of drugs;
  • prepare or pack the drug for sale or for someone else to sell;
  • intentionally transport or deliver the drug;
  • guard or hide the drug with the intention of selling it; or
  • possess the drug with the intention of selling any of it.

Proof that a person possessed a trafficable quantity of a controlled drug gives rise to a presumption that there was intention or understanding that the drug was to be sold.

This means that the court will deem or automatically assume that you intended to sell the drugs meaning that you will face higher penalties. This presumption can be rebutted by evidence.

Trafficking in a certain amount doesn’t have to occur all at once. You can be charged with trafficking a greater amount than you actually did, if it is proved that you trafficked the controlled drug or plant more than one time, or repeatedly within a 7 day period.

If you traffic in more than one controlled drug or plant, there are rules, which will allow the police to count the different quantities to make up a combined total. This means is that if you traffic two small quantities of different drugs, they can be counted as one larger amount, which means you might face higher penalties.

The law specifies that where the required fraction of each drug you are found with, adds up to a whole number greater than 1, you will be charged with an offence based on a higher aggregated quantity. For example, if you are charged with trafficking a number of different drugs, the prosecution will calculate the ‘required fractions’ of the quantity of each pure drug by dividing the amount of the pure drug you traffic with the smallest specified ‘trafficable’ or ‘commercial’ or ‘large commercial’ quantity.

For example if you traffic 1g of heroin and the trafficable quantity is 2g the prosecution will divide 1 by 2 to give a fraction of ½. If you are also found trafficking 1.5g of ice where the trafficable quantity is 2g the prosecution will divide 1.5 by 2 to give a fraction of ¾. The prosecution would then add ½ plus ¾ to give 1¼ which is greater than 1. So you would be charged with a single offence of trafficking a trafficable quantity of a controlled drug, even though separately the quantities were each less than the trafficable quantity.

The perceived harm potential of a drug is not relevant to determining which offence you will be charged with (or the quantity you were alleged to traffic) but may be taken into account when you are being sentenced.

Trafficking offences carry different penalties depending on the circumstances in which the trafficking took place. If you sell, or are involved in an attempted sale of drugs for the benefit of a criminal organisation, such as an outlawed bikie gang, or under the direction or control of a criminal organisation, you can be charged with aggravated trafficking.

If you sell, or are involved in an attempted sale of drugs in or around a prescribed area you can face higher penalties.

Prescribed areas include:

  • licensed premises such as bars, pubs, clubs, casinos; or
  • entertainment events such as concerts, festivals, sporting matches or parades.

You can also be charged with this offence if you are dealing in a car park near a prescribed area or a queue to enter a prescribed area.

Penalties

Trafficking in a large commercial quantity of a controlled drug:

Maximum penalty: $500,000 and/or imprisonment for life.

Trafficking in a commercial quantity of a controlled drug:

Maximum penalty:

  • For a basic offence: $200,000 and/or imprisonment for 25 years.
  • For an aggravated offence: $500,000 and/or imprisonment for life.

Trafficking in a trafficable quantity of a controlled drug in a prescribed area:

Maximum penalty:

  • for a basic offence: $75,000 and/or imprisonment for 15 years.
  • for an aggravated offence: $200,000 and/or imprisonment for 25 years.

Trafficking in a trafficable quantity of a controlled drug (not in a prescribed area):

Maximum penalty:

  • for a basic offence: $50,000 and/or imprisonment for 10 years.
  • for an aggravated offence: $75,000 and/or imprisonment for 15 years.

If you are charged with trafficking a trafficable quantity of cannabis, but less than a commercial quantity, your case will normally be heard as a summary matter in the Magistrates Court.

Trafficking Trafficable mixed quantity (grams) Commercial pure quantity (grams) Large pure quantity (grams)
Drug Maximum penalty: $200,000 and/or imprisonment for 25 years (if in a prescribed area). Maximum penalty: $500,000 and/or imprisonment for life (for an aggravated offence). Maximum penalty: $500,000 and/or imprisonmentfor life.
Cannabis 250g (mixed) 1000g

2500g (mixed)

2000g

12,500g (mixed)

Cannabis Resin (Hash) 25g (mixed) 1000g

2000g (mixed)

2000g

10,000g (mixed)

Cannabis Oil 25g (mixed) 1000g

2000g (mixed)

2000g

10,000g (mixed)

Cannabis Plants 10 plants 20 plants 100 plants
Methadone 400g (mixed) 4000g (mixed) 20,000g (mixed)
DMT 2g (mixed)

or 10 doses

200g (mixed)

or 20 doses

1000g (mixed)

or 100 doses

Amphetamine (speed) 2g (mixed) 100g

500g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Dexamphetamine 2g (mixed) 500g (mixed) 1000g (mixed)
Buprenorphine 0.06g (mixed) 10g (mixed) 40g (mixed)
MDMA 2g (mixed) 100g

500g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Cocaine 2g (mixed) 100g

200g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Ketamine 6g (mixed) 500g (mixed) 2000g (mixed)
Meth-amphetamine/Ice 2g (mixed) 100g

500g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Morphine 20g (mixed) 200g (mixed) 1000g (mixed)
GHB 50 g (mixed) 500g (mixed) 2000g (mixed)
Opium 30g (mixed) 1000g (mixed) 4000g (mixed)
Heroin 2g (mixed) 100g

200g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

LSD 0.015g (mixed)

or 10 doses

5g (mixed)

or 20 doses

15g (mixed)

or 100 doses

PCP 0.0075g (mixed) 1g (mixed) 4g (mixed)
Psilocibin (Magic Mushrooms) 100g (mixed) 250g (mixed) 1000g (mixed)
Tetrahydro-cannabinols (THC) 250g (mixed) 1000g

2500g (mixed)

2000g

12,500g (mixed)

JWH Synthetic Cannabinols 250g (mixed)

or 10 doses

2500g (mixed)

or 20 doses

12,500g (mixed)

or 20 does

N-BOMes 0.015g (mixed)

or 10 doses

5g (mixed)

or 20 doses

15g (mixed)

or 100 doses

Manufacture/cultivation

Manufacturing a controlled drug for sale without lawful authority is an offence.

Manufacturing is defined as producing, extracting or refining the drug or otherwise taking part in the manufacture of a drug.

This could involve transporting the drug, buying precursor substances to make the drug, guarding or hiding the drug, providing money to manufacture the drug or in any way controlling or directing the manufacture of the drug.

Cultivating a controlled plant for sale without lawful authority is an offence.

Cultivation is defined as:

  • sowing or scattering the seed produced by the controlled plant;
  • planting, growing, tending, nurturing the controlled plant; or
  • harvesting or drying the controlled plant.

Other actions like watering the plant or fertilising it will likely be considered cultivation.

It also includes taking part in the cultivation of a controlled plant.

Proof that a person manufactured or cultivated a trafficable quantity of a controlled drug gives rise to a presumption that there was intention or understanding that the drug was to be sold.

This means that the court will automatically assume that you intended to sell the drugs. This presumption can be rebutted by evidence.

Manufacturing or cultivating a large commercial quantity of a controlled drug or plant for sale is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $500,000 and/or imprisonment for life.

Manufacturing or cultivating a commercial quantity of a controlled drug or plant for sale:

Maximum penalty:

  • for a basic offence: $200,000 and/or imprisonment for 25 years.f
  • for an aggravated offence: $500,000 and/or imprisonment for life.

Manufacturing or cultivating a trafficable quantity controlled drug or plant for sale:

Maximum penalty:

  • for a basic offence: $50,000 and/or imprisonment for 10 years.
  • for an aggravated offence: $75,000 and/or imprisonment for 15 years.

Manufacturing a drug for personal use, and where there is no evidence of an intention to sell the drug is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $35,000 and/or imprisonment for 7 years.

Cultivating a controlled plant for personal use, and where there is no evidence of an intention to sell is an offence. Cultivating cannabis plants using artificially enhanced indoor means (hydroponics) or intending to sell the cannabis is an also offence. Cultivating more than 5 cannabis plants for personal use only is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $2000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.

Cultivating 5 or less natural cannabis plant is a less serious offence.

Maximum penalty: $1000 and/or imprisonment for 6 months.

If you sell instructions for the manufacture or cultivation of a controlled drug, or plant or are found in possession of instructions intending to sell them, without a reasonable excuse, you are guilty of an offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a basic offence: $10,000 and/or imprisonment for 3 years.
  • for an aggravated offence: $15,000 and/or imprisonment for 5 years.
Manufacture/Cultivation Trafficable mixed quantity (grams) Commercial pure quantity (grams) Large commercial pure quantity (grams)
Drug Maximum penalty: $75,000 and/or imprisonment for 15 years (for an aggravated offence). Maximum penalty: $500,000 and/or imprisonment for life (for an aggravated offence). Maximum penalty: $500,000 and/or imprisonmentfor life.
Cannabis 250g (mixed) 1000g

2500g (mixed)

2000g

12,500g (mixed)

Cannabis Resin (Hash) 25g (mixed) 1000g

2000g (mixed)

2000g

10,000g (mixed)

Cannabis Oil 25g (mixed) 1000g

2000g (mixed)

2000g

10,000g (mixed)

Cannabis Plants 10 plants 20 plants 100 plants
Methadone 400g (mixed) 4000g (mixed) 20,000g (mixed)
DMT 2g (mixed)

or 10 doses

200g (mixed)

or 20 doses

1000g (mixed)

or 100 doses

Amphetamine (speed) 2g (mixed) 100g

500g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Dexamphetamine 2g (mixed) 500g (mixed) 1000g (mixed)
Buprenorphine 0.06g (mixed) 10g (mixed) 40g (mixed)
MDMA 2g (mixed) 100g

500g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Cocaine 2g (mixed) 100g

200g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Ketamine 6g (mixed) 500g (mixed) 2000g (mixed)
Meth-amphetamine/Ice 2g (mixed) 100g

500g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

Morphine 20g (mixed) 200g (mixed) 1000g (mixed)
GHB 50 g (mixed) 500g (mixed) 2000g (mixed)
Opium 30g (mixed) 1000g (mixed) 4000g (mixed)
Heroin 2g (mixed) 100g

200g (mixed)

750g

1000g (mixed)

LSD 0.015g (mixed)

or 10 doses

5g (mixed)

or 20 doses

15g (mixed)

or 100 doses

PCP 0.0075g (mixed) 1g (mixed) 4g (mixed)
Psilocibin (Magic Mushrooms) 100g (mixed) 250g (mixed) 1000g (mixed)
Tetrahydro-cannabinols (THC) 250g (mixed) 1000g

2500g (mixed)

2000g

12,500g (mixed)

JWH Synthetic Cannabinols 250g (mixed)

or 10 doses

2500g (mixed)

or 20 doses

12,500g (mixed)

or 20 does

N-BOMes 0.015g (mixed)

or 10 doses

5g (mixed)

or 20 doses

15g (mixed)

or 100 doses

Aggravating circumstances

Supply or manufacture in connection with organised crime

As noted above, increased penalties are given to aggravated drug offences that are committed in connection with organised crime groups or operations.

Supply or manufacture in presence of children

Penalties for selling, supplying, trafficking, manufacturing or cultivation offences involving children are extremely severe in South Australia. You can be charged with drug offences involving children even if you believed the child was an adult. The child will never be blamed or held responsible for being involved with drugs or controlled plants.

Sale, or supply, or possession of a controlled drug with intent to sell or supply to a child is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $1,000,000 and/or imprisonment for life.

Sale, or supply, or possession of a controlled drug with intent to sell or supply to another person (whether a child or adult) in a school zone is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $1,000,000 and/or imprisonment for life.

Procuring, paying, forcing, or otherwise involving a child in the commission of a drug offence is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $1,000,000 and/or imprisonment for life.

Selling instructions for the manufacture, or cultivation of a controlled drug or plant to a child, or being found in possession of instructions intending to sell them to a child, without a reasonable excuse, is an offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a basic offence: $20,000 and/or imprisonment for 3 years.
  • for an aggravated offence: $30,000 and/or imprisonment for 5 years.

Simple possession and cannabis offences

Simple possession offence

A simple possession offence is where you have been found in possession of a small amount of a controlled drug (less than 2g of heroin, cocaine or amphetamines), or a small amount of cannabis (less than 100g) that you intend to use for your own personal use.

If you are charged with a simple possession offence, and you are over the age of 18, the police must refer you to an assessment panel that will determine if your matter should proceed to court or whether you can be diverted from the justice system.

In making its assessment, the panel may ask you to allow it to access personal information about you or for you to have an examination. The panel then decides whether to deal with the matter or send it to court.

You cannot be prosecuted in court without first being referred to the assessment panel.

If the panel deals with the matter it may issue you with a warning or it may require you to give a written undertaking. An undertaking is a promise from you to them that you will comply with their requirements to prove that you will try to reform your behaviour. For instance, an undertaking may require you to promise to attend treatment, education or rehabilitation programs. Signing an undertaking is not an admission of guilt. An undertaking cannot be for longer than 6 months.

If you make an undertaking and do what you promised to do, the police cannot prosecute you for that offence.

If you do not comply with requests made by the panel or you do not stick to your undertakings the panel can cancel your referral and send the matter to court.

Penalties

If you do not comply with the treatment undertaking and the provider cancels the treatment, the offence can go to court where you will face a criminal conviction.

Maximum penalty:

  • for cannabis: a maximum fine of $500.
  • for other controlled drugs: a maximum fine of $2000 and/or imprisonment 2 years.

If you are found with a larger amount of a drug of dependence in your possession there is a presumption that you intend to sell or supply the drug. You will have to prove that it is for personal use.

The presence of other equipment such as scales, foils, and deal bags will support charges that you intended to sell or supply the drug which will prevent you from being given a simple possession offence fine. Remember that you have the right to seek legal advice before answering any questions.

Simple cannabis offence

While cannabis is an illegal drug of dependence in South Australia, the penalties for most cannabis offences are lower than for other illegal drugs.

Cannabis has only been decriminalised which means that, while it is still illegal, you may face smaller penalties and no criminal conviction if you are caught with a small amount of weed.

This approach is similar to how police treat speeding in a vehicle. It is illegal to drive over the speed limit, but if you are only a little bit over the speed limit you can be fined instead of taken to court. However, if you are caught driving much faster than the speed limit you will still face court and high penalties, including jail time.

In South Australia you can receive an on the spot fine for simple cannabis offences, thus avoiding the courts and a criminal record. Be aware though, that you do not have a right to an on the spot fine, it is up to the police if they give you a fine or take the matter to court. You cannot be given a simple cannabis infringement notice if you are a child under 18 years of age.

Police will usually only issue a fine to a first-time offender, who must admit to possession or use of the cannabis. This means it is sensible to be polite to police officers if you are caught, so that they are more likely to give you a fine rather than take you to court.

In South Australia a simple cannabis offence is:

  • The cultivation of 1 cannabis plant (natural – not artificially enhanced or hydroponic);
  • possession of less than 100 g of cannabis or 20g of cannabis resin (hash);
  • consumption of cannabis or cannabis resin when you are not in a public place (for example, in your home). Consuming cannabis in your car or another type of vehicle when out in public is consumption in a public place and therefore is not a simple cannabis offence; or
  • possession of equipment used for smoking cannabis or used in the preparation for smoking cannabis (for personal use only – not for sale).

If you have committed a simple cannabis offence you have the option of paying the following fines, within 28 days to avoid being taken to court where you would face a criminal conviction.

Possession of cannabis Fine Amount
  • where the amount is less than 25g:
$150
  • where the amount is 25g or more but less than 100g:
$300
Possession of cannabis resin (hash) –
  • where the amount is less than 5g:
$150
  • where the amount is 5g or more but less than 20g :
$300
Smoking or consumption of cannabis or cannabis resin (NOT in a public place or other prescribed place): $150
Possession of equipment (1 or more pieces) for personal use in connection with the smoking or consumption of cannabis or cannabis resin: $150
Possession of equipment accompanied by another simple cannabis offence relating to the possession, smoking or consumption of cannabis or cannabis resin: $180
Cultivation of 1 cannabis plant: $300

Synthetics, legal highs, and new, and emerging drugs

What are synthetics?

Synthetic drugs are newly developed substances that are designed to mimic or re-produce the effects of illegal drugs and plants. Many well known drugs are also synthetic (which means that the drug is manufactured from chemicals rather than extracted from plants) but the term synthetic drugs has come to mean newly emerging drugs or ‘designer’ drugs which have come onto the streets but which are not well known or well tested.

Synthetics are marketed as ‘legal highs’, ‘designer drugs’, ‘herbal highs’, ‘party pills’, or ‘social tonics’, but often they may not be legal, and may not be safe or tested for human consumption. Often packaging will state that they are ‘bath salts’, ‘research chemicals’ or ‘plant food’.

Synthetics can have very serious health consequences, because even if you have taken them before, the chemical formula may change from batch to batch and within a batch. If you do overdose or have a bad trip ambulance paramedics or medical practitioners may not know exactly what you have taken or how to treat you.

There are synthetics which mimic the effects of MDMA, LSD and cannabis as well as many others, but these can be much more potent than the drugs they are imitating. Synthetics can come as pills, powders or dried herbs.

The definition of prohibited drug and prohibited plant also includes analogues (substances which have the same chemical structure of drugs and related drugs), which may mean that synthetic type substances which are chemically derived from a illegal drug will also be illegal even if it is not listed.

In recent years police and government have tried to control synthetics because of concerns that they produce the same effects and highs as illegal drugs but can be easily bought from alternative tobacconists, tattoo parlours and adult shops.

Synthetics are also produced and released by manufacturers quickly, without all possible side effects being known or tested. This means that synthetics may be more risky, legally and from a health perspective, than well known illegal drugs because you won’t know what you’re getting.

New laws governing synthetics (outlined below) mean that many synthetic substances marketed as ‘legal highs’ are now actually illegal and can attract the same or similar penalties as the drugs they mimic. It is very hard for the average person to tell which chemicals are in a synthetic substance, which means you might be breaking the law without realising.

Common synthetics

Cannabis Type Synthetics Hallucinogenic Type Synthetics
  • Kronic
  • Voodoo
  • Spice
  • White Revolver
  • Ash Inferno
  • Black Widow
  • All JWH cannibinols
  • Mephedrone/M-CAT (Meth-Cathinone)
  • Amped (synthetic cocaine)
  • Zoom
  • Cloud Nine
  • Ivory Wave
  • N-BOMes/’N-Bombs” (synthetic LSD)
  • Smiles
  • Pandora

Are synthetics legal?

In South Australia the law now automatically imports the Standard for the Uniform Scheduling of Medicines and Poisons (SUSMP) formerly known as the Australian Poisons Standard. The standard is a list of substances that the Australian government has restricted or made illegal for sale or use without authorisation. The South Australian law adopts all the criminal offences for the supply, sale and possession of prohibited substances available at the national level.

This means that synthetics can be quickly added to the Poisons Standard by the Australian government and then become illegal to possess or supply in South Australia. Synthetics are legally risky because the Australian Government can make them illegal almost overnight. What might have been legal yesterday may actually be illegal today.

Most synthetic drugs which have been on the streets for the last year or two will now be illegal, because the Australian Government and other state and territory governments have recently cracked down on them after a number of incidents where people have died after taking synthetic drugs.

Other Australian laws can temporarily ban the sale or display of substances, without making them illegal.

Interim controlled drugs

The South Australian Government has recently given itself new powers to declare substances which are considered to be extremely dangerous to human, but which have not been made illegal, to be an ‘interim controlled drug’.

A declaration that a substance is an interim controlled drug can last up to a year and may not be announced in the general media.

This means that you can face all the same punishments that you would face for selling, supplying, trafficking or manufacturing, without knowing that you are doing anything wrong.

Controlled drug alternatives

South Australian law has created offences for the manufacture and distribution of controlled drug alternatives.

A controlled drug alternative is a substance that is intended to have pharmacological effects (a high) similar to those of a controlled drug or is intended to be a legal alternative to a controlled drug.

This law is designed to prevent people from developing and marketing new synthetic drugs, which affect a user by causing psychoactive effects such as hallucinations, or changes to their movements, thinking, behaviour, perception, awareness, or mood. It is a very broad law designed to apply to all synthetics drugs or ‘legal highs’ that haven’t otherwise been made illegal.

Any substance that is designed to mimic or replicate the effects of an illegal drug is also illegal. This means that all synthetic drugs produced and marketed, as legal highs are illegal.

It is an offence to manufacture a controlled drug alternative intending that substance to have a similar pharmacological effect to a controlled drug or to be legal alternative to a controlled drug.

Manufacturing includes:

  • acquiring equipment, substances or materials;
  • storing equipment, substances or materials;
  • carrying, transporting, loading or unloading equipment, substances or materials;
  • guarding or concealing equipment, substances or materials;
  • providing or arranging finance (including finance for the acquisition of equipment, substances or materials);
  • providing or allowing the use of premises or jointly occupying premises.

Manufacturing also includes taking part in the manufacture or in anyway directing or controlling the manufacture of a controlled drug.

A court may still find a person guilty of taking part in the manufacture of a controlled drug alternative even if the person believed the substance was not an illegal controlled drug alternative.

It does not matter if the person was told that the drug was legal or thought that the substance was not intended for human consumption.

Maximum penalty: $15,000 and/or imprisonment for 4 years.

It is also an offence to promote a controlled drug alternative. This means that it is illegal to advertise, market or encourage a person to buy or consume a controlled drug alternative.

If you promote or talk up a substance as having the same high as another illegal drug, or as being a legal high, or in some other way make another person believe that they are taking a legal alternative to a controlled drug you can be charged with this offence.

Maximum penalty: $10,000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.

If a police officer suspects that a person intends to manufacture, package, sell or supply a controlled drug alternative can personally give a person a written warning notice stating that it is an offence to manufacture, package, sell or supply that substance.

If the person does not heed the warning and does manufacture, package, sell or supply the substance the person is guilty of an offence.

Maximum penalty: $15,000 and/or imprisonment for 4 years.

If a person is running a business such as an adult store, tobacconist or herbal high shop and is convicted of an offence involving a controlled drug alternative as part of that business, the court may order that that person cannot do specific business activities.

This may mean that a business which sells, supplies, promotes, packages, manufactures controlled drug alternatives can be forced to shut down their business.

Searching and drug detection

General search powers

A police officer may search you, your clothing or property which you have on you and may seize any thing they find, if the police officer has reasonable grounds to suspect that you are holding a controlled drug, or controlled plant, or have possession of anything connected to an offence. They do not need a warrant.

Police can only search you or your property if:

  • they suspect on reasonable grounds that you have a drug in your possession, and that because the circumstances are serious and urgent, if they don’t search you immediately it is likely that you might try and dispose of, hide or conceal the drugs;
  • they suspect on reasonable grounds that you have possession of things related to an offence, like a weapon or stolen goods in your possession;
  • you consent or agree to the search;
  • you are been arrested or taken into custody by the police; or
  • the police have a warrant or court order to search you.

What is a reasonable suspicion?

Reasonable suspicion is a complicated legal concept, and whether police were correct to believe they had a reasonable suspicion is a matter for the court to decide.

The issue is not whether the police officer was correct or right to hold a suspicion leading to a search, but whether the suspicion was reasonably supported by fact.

A reasonable suspicion is an honestly held suspicion or opinion, which is based on more than a mere possibility or hunch, but which can be less firm or less supported by evidence than reasonable belief.

This is what the court will consider when determining whether the police suspicion to search you was reasonable.

For example if you are in a place known to be used for dealing drugs, and are known to police as a user and police see you meet another person for a few minutes in an alleyway this might be enough to establish a reasonable suspicion.

The fact that you are a user alone might not be enough to form a reasonable basis for a suspicion that you are in possession of drugs. Police will consider your behaviour, the time of day and location.

If police ask you to roll up your sleeves and see track marks that would not be a sufficient reason to search you. You have a right to refuse police to show them your arms if they haven’t told you what offence they suspect you of committing. Police must have more evidence than the fact that you have used drugs in the past.

If the suspicion is proved to be unreasonable in court then the search might be considered to be illegal and any evidence of drug offences such as drugs, large amounts of cash, fits or paraphernalia might not be allowed to prove your guilt.

The court will examine what facts were the basis of the suspicion, and the source of those facts in the light of the whole of the surrounding circumstances.

It is important to remember that even if the search was illegal or the evidence illegally obtained, the court can still allow the evidence to be used, if it is in the public interest, or if the “desirability of admitting the evidence outweighs the undesirability of admitting such evidence”.

When considering the desirability of admitting illegally obtained evidence the court will weigh up several questions including:

  • whether the evidence is useful in proving something important or is key evidence in the proceedings;
  • the nature of the subject matter of the case and the relevant offence;
  • the seriousness of the offence and whether it was deliberate;
  • whether the evidence has been used before or is likely to be relied upon in a future case; and
  • the difficulty of obtaining the evidence legally or without contravention of an Australian law.

If the improperly obtained evidence is necessary for obtaining a conviction for a serious drugs offence, the Court will be more likely than not to exercise its discretion to allow the improperly obtained evidence to be used in the case.

Conduct of searches

General or frisk searches

Police can frisk search you by asking you to remove your jacket and patting you down. If you refuse to be searched the police can arrest you and use force to search you.

It is an offence to resist or hinder a police officer who wishes to carry out a search based on a reasonable suspicion that you possess controlled drugs or plants.

Maximum penalty: $10,000 or imprisonment for 2 years.

Strip searches

Police can strip search you if they have taken you into custody. If you are asked to strip so they can search you, you must follow their directions to remove the items of clothing they say.

Police are not allowed to strip search you in public, but must make the search as private as the circumstances allow. A search can only be conducted by an officer of the same sex as you, unless it is not reasonably practical in the circumstances. Police conducting a search can ask you to open your mouth or shake out your hair, but cannot force you to open your mouth without an order as this is considered an intimate search.

Forensic procedures

Police are not normally allowed to conduct forensic procedures (often thought of as internal or cavity searches) without getting a warrant from a Magistrate or obtaining your informed consent, although there are some exceptions where the police wish to undertake less invasive sample taking, such as taking your fingerprints.

Forensic procedures are actually a category of procedures that are normally performed on suspects (such as in sexual assault cases) after arrest.

The procedures can include taking DNA samples, genital swabs or internal searches. Forensic procedures are divided into intimate and intrusive procedures. The law on forensic procedures is very complicated, but police would not normally need to perform a forensic search on you for a drug offence, unless they believed you had swallowed a bag of drugs for trafficking.

Intimate procedures can often be performed by a police officer who has the rank of a Sergeant or higher. Any intrusive forensic procedure must be performed by a medical practitioner. The medical practitioner can request help from police to carry out the search.

Intrusive forensic procedures include:

  • searching your cavities, or making detailed external examination of your genitals or anus, scanning your body with an X-ray and taking samples of your pubic hair, anal, external genital or breast swabs, saliva, blood and urine samples, DNA samples, mouth scrapes or dental impressions.

Intimate procedures include:

  • taking samples of hair, fingernail or toenail scrapes, external swabs or washings, and taking fingerprints, handprints and toe prints.

Intimate searches, which involve the police touching exposed skin around your genitals or buttocks or breasts, must only be conducted by an officer of the same sex as you, unless it is not reasonably practical in the circumstances. Intimate searches should be done in the presence of an interpreter if the person being searched cannot speak English well.

Police are not allowed to conduct intrusive searches (often called internal or cavity searches). Intrusive searches involving the searching or introduction of anything into a body orifice including the vagina or rectum, cannot be done by police alone, but must be conducted in a medical practitioner.

Police cannot allow intimate or intrusive searches on children under 16 or an incapable person who is unable to understand the nature of the search and its consequences unless a parent, guardian, or responsible independent adult is present to oversee the search, unless the circumstances are serious or urgent.

Intrusive searches should also be filmed on videotape unless it is not reasonably practical in the circumstances or the detainee objects. It is an offence for the police to play the video of an intimate search other than in the course of an investigation or court case.

Maximum penalty: $10000 and/or 2 years imprisonment.

Police must make sure that you give informed consent, which means that you must understand how the search will be carried out, and the consequences of the search. Police cannot ask you to consent if you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Don’t give consent to a forensic procedure without speaking to a lawyer!

Searches of vehicles

Police can also stop your vehicle or search your vehicle, without a warrant if they suspect on reasonable grounds, that you have possession of a drug or other item (like paraphernalia, stolen property or weapons) associated with an offence. An example of reasonable grounds to search your car would be if you are stopped at a random breath test and your car smelt of cannabis, or if you are stopped because you ran a red light and police see you put something in the glove box, while they approach your car.

Searches of private premises

Police cannot normally enter your house without a warrant unless:

  • you let them inside, after they knock and ask to come in;
  • they have a reasonable belief that there is a breach or disturbance of the peace (such as a fight, domestic violence, house fire, out of control house party);
  • they have a reasonable belief that someone is at risk of being seriously injured in the premises; or
  • the police are pursuing a suspect or escapee.

A reasonable belief must be based on stronger evidence than a reasonable suspicion. For example if police hear yelling and screaming and smashing glass from inside a house, and have already been called by neighbours then they would be able to form a belief that someone was at risk of violence and would be lawfully entitled to enter the house using reasonable force as necessary.

Police are allowed to search licensed premises such as bars, pubs or clubs, and non-residential premises where they believe that medical devices or chemical substances are being stored without a warrant.

Drug premises

There are no specific drug premises laws in South Australia.

Sniffer dogs

In South Australia police use sniffer dogs to carry out both general (‘random’) drug detection and to assist with searches of your person or property.

General (‘random’) drug detection

General drug detection occurs where a dog is used to conduct ‘random’ drug detection. In this case if police are conducting general drug detection and the sniffer dog indicates you, by sitting down next to you, this will be enough for police to form a reasonable suspicion that you are in possession of a controlled drug and they can then search you.

Assisting with searches

Sniffer dogs can be further used to help search you, or your property or vehicle after police have formed a reasonable suspicion that you are in possession of a drug.

Is general drug detection a search?

Random sniffer dog drug detection is not considered to be a search. This is because the sniffing is done passively and is not a physical intrusion into a person’s privacy or property. For example, a sniffer dog that wanders past a suitcase with cannabis inside is not searching the suitcase. Police who ask a bus driver to pull over and let them put a dog in the luggage compartment are not conducting a search.

However, if the dog touches you before it sits down, or if the dog stays in contact with you or digs its nose into your pockets or forcefully bumps and nudges into you, this may be considered to be an assault.

If there has been an assault before reasonable suspicion that you possessed drugs was formed in the minds of the police you may be able to challenge in court any evidence (drugs) that the police find on you.

In a NSW case a sniffer dog was bunting and ferreting and nudging a man around his groin before it sat down. In this case the evidence of drugs found after the police searched the man was found to be inadmissible in court and the man’s conviction was overturned.

This means that when the police use sniffer dogs to carry out random general drug detection they must keep the dog under control and must take all reasonable steps to prevent the dog from touching you.

You should try to avoid touching or patting a drug detection dog as this may be considered to be obstructing or hindering police.

Where can police use sniffer dogs?

Sniffer dogs can only be used for random drug detection of people entering, leaving or being in the following places:

  • in pubs, clubs and licensed places where alcohol is served or the car parks of such places;
  • at entertainment events in public venues, such as sports matches, festivals, concerts, dance parties and street parades or in car parks of those venues;
  • on public transport and stations; or
  • in any other public place (including places where the public can be admitted during business hours or roads or other transit routes) if a drug detection operation is authorised by a senior police officer.

Police can also declare areas up to 5 square km to be a drug transit route, which means that police can conduct drug detection operations inside vehicles and vessels over extended periods of time.

If you are approached and sniffed by a dog, don’t panic and run, because this will also give police reasonable grounds to detain you and search you.

Sniffer dogs may not always be accurate, so even if you are not holding any drugs co-operate with the police while they search you. You can ask for their name, rank and station. Ask why you are being searched. If you are asked to give your name, ask if you have to tell them. If they say no, don’t, because those details can be entered into their database. If they say yes, tell them and seek legal advice to make a complaint.

If police do find drugs in your possession you will have to tell them your name and address, but nothing more than that. You have a right to silence. If you do speak to the officer it is always good advice to be polite and calm – if you only have a small amount of drugs they might let you off with a caution. If you swear at the police or resist them you can be arrested and charged with additional offences.

Drug and drink driving

General information

The law imposes strict requirements that drivers are fit to drive whenever they get into the car.

Driving while being under the influence of drugs and alcohol is an offence, regardless of whether the drug was legally prescribed or not. In addition driving while you have a certain concentration of alcohol in your breath or blood (Blood Alcohol Concentration – BAC) or certain prohibited dangerous drugs in your oral fluid or blood is an offence.

Driving also includes attempting to drive a vehicle or put a vehicle in motion, or being in charge of a vehicle on a road or road related area.

This means you can be charged if:

  • you are sitting in the drivers seat;
  • you turn on the headlights;
  • engage the gears; or
  • put the keys in the ignition.

You can even be charged for sleeping in the any of the other car seats while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

All drivers have a general responsibility to report any permanent or long-term injury or illness or worsening of such a condition that may impair his or her ability to drive safely. A driver must also notify any other factor related to physical or mental health that may impair his or her ability to drive safely. This includes a drug or substance dependency. A driver with an impairment must within a reasonable time after becoming aware of the impairment or when applying for a renewal or grant of license.

It is an offence to fail to notify of a new or aggravated mental or physical incapacity or other relevant factor that is likely to adversely affect your ability to drive safely.

Maximum penalty: $750.

If you have an illness, injury or incapacity you are not automatically banned from driving. Depending on the nature and circumstances of your impairment you could be granted a conditional licence or even an unrestricted licence once a health practitioner has assessed you.

For example, if you are stabilised on methadone or buprenorphine for opioid dependency you may not have a higher risk of a crash, providing the dose has been stabilised over some weeks and you are not abusing other impairing drugs.

If you are driving, police in South Australia have the power to request to see your driver’s licence and to ask your name and address.

It is an offence to fail to provide your licence or state your name or address when requested.

Maximum penalty: $750.

If you are convicted of drink or drug driving, you will have to undergo a drink and drug driving awareness course before you can get your license back.

South Australia operates a voluntary interlock scheme. An Interlock is a breath testing immobiliser device that is fitted to your car and prevents you from starting the car unless it tests the driver as having no alcohol in his or her breath.

You can apply for an interlock license condition after you have served half of your disqualification for a drink driving offence. The interlock license condition will last for twice the time you have left to serve of your disqualification when you apply for the interlock license. You will have to pay for the Interlock to be fitted to and removed from your vehicle and for all other associated costs including monthly rent of the interlock device, two compulsory drink driving counseling sessions and a new license. All up the Interlock can cost as much as $3000 a year.

For more information on the SA interlock scheme can be found here: http://www.transport.sa.gov.au/pdfs/licence_certification/258.pdf

Driving under the influence or while impaired

In South Australia it is an offence to drive where you are so under the influence of alcohol or any other drug that you are mentally or physically impaired and incapable of being able to exercise effective control of your vehicle.

This means that it is illegal to drive on prescription medications such as codeine, Valium (diazepam), benzodiazepines, buprenorphine, and methadone if your ability to drive properly is impaired because you are under the influence.

There is no defence to this charge that you were under the influence of legal prescription medication.

Police can conduct a test of your impairment by drugs or intoxication by alcohol if they have reasonable grounds to believe you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol based on your behaviour. Police might preform a preliminary assessment (‘impairment or sobriety‘ test) of physical factors such as your behaviour, balance and coordination. If you look drowsy or are unable to walk straight or keep your eyes focused, or otherwise seem uncoordinated or behaving in a manner that indicates that you may be impaired by alcohol or a drug, you will be required to provide breath, saliva, blood and/or urine samples.

A drug-screening test can test for all drugs including codeine, Valium, benzodiazepines, buprenorphine and methadone by analysing breath, urine or blood samples. While police process the tests and await confirmation, you may be arrested and taken to a police station to be charged and re-tested.

Police will be more likely to make you take a drug impairment assessment or require a drug screening test of your blood or urine if you were involved in an accident, or if the police have reasonable grounds to believe that you were driving erratically, dangerously, or recklessly.

It is an offence to drive while so under the influence of alcohol or any other drug as to be incapable of properly or effectively controlling the vehicle.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: a fine of at least $1100 and not more than $1600; or 3 months imprisonment, with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 12 months.
  • for a second or subsequent offence: fine of at least $1900 and not more than $2 900; or 6 months imprisonment, with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 3 years.

You can even be charged and fined for riding a bike.

Maximum penalty: $500.

It is an offence to fail to pull over when directed by police or to fail to submit to a breath, blood or saliva test or to properly comply with police directions when undertaking a test. Police should warn you of the consequences of failing to provide a test sample.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: a fine of at least $1100 and not more than $1600 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 12 months;
  • for a subsequent offence: a fine of at least $1900 and not more than $2900 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 3 years.

Drug driving

It is an offence for a person to drive a motor vehicle on a public street or in a public place if that person has cannabis, amphetamines, or MDMA present in their blood or oral fluid. It doesn’t matter whether your driving was affected or not, the presence of the drug in your system will establish that you have committed an offence.

Roadside drug testing of motorists occurs on South Australian roads. Police can also now conduct random roadside drug testing. Any driver or person who is supervising a learner driver can be required to undergo random breath testing and random drug testing.

Random drug testing using saliva samples tests for the active ingredient in cannabis (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol – THC), speed and ice (methamphetamine), or ecstasy (MDMA).

If a positive sample is detected, you will be required to provide a second sample that will be run through another oral screening device. If a second positive test is found, a sample of your saliva will be taken and sent to a laboratory for confirmation. You will not usually be charged at this stage, although you may be prohibited from driving for 24 hours. If you are prohibited from driving by the police you cannot drive for 24 hours even to pick up your car the next day.

In addition, SA Police can test for all drugs by requiring a drug-screening test that can involve a blood sample being taken and analysed. Police can make you take a drug-screening test if your behaviour indicates that you might be under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Police will be more likely to make you take a drug test if you were involved in an accident or if the police have reasonable grounds to believe that you were driving culpably, dangerously or recklessly.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: a fine of at least $900 and not more than $1300 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 6 months;
  • for a second offence: a fine of at least $1100 and not more than $1600 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 12 months;
  • for a third or subsequent offence: a fine of not less than $1500 and not more than $2200 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 2 years.

The courts will count any previous drink driving offences in determining what penalty is appropriate.

It is an offence to refuse to submit to a drug screening or oral fluid test.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: a fine of at least $900 and not more than $1300 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 6 months;
  • for a subsequent offence: a fine of at least $1500 and not more than $2200 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 2 years.

Drink driving

It is an offence for a person to drive a motor vehicle (or ride a bike) on a public street or in a public place if that person has 0.05 grams of alcohol in the person’s blood or breath. Special drivers (like learner drivers or those on restricted licences cannot have any alcohol present in their blood or breath. Police can suspend and confiscate your license on the spot for category 2 or 3 offences or for a refusal to take a breath test.

Maximum penalties:

Blood Alcohol concentration level (BAC) First offence Second offence Third or subsequent offence
Category 1

0.00g – 0.079g

$1,100

Min. disqualification: 3 months

$1,100

Min. disqualification: 6 months

$1,100

Min. disqualification: 9 months

Category 2

0.08g – 1.49g

$900 – 1300

Min. disqualification: 6 months

$1100 – 1600

Min. disqualification: 12 months

$1,500 – 2200

Min. disqualification: 2 years

Category 3

1.5g or more

$1100 – 1600

Min. disqualification: 12 months

$1600 – 2400

Min. disqualification: 3 years

$1,900 – 2900

Min. disqualification: 3 years

Police do not need any specific reason to test your breath for the presence of alcohol. Random breath testing is common.

It is an offence to fail to pull over when directed by police or to fail to submit to a breath, blood or to properly comply with police directions when undertaking a test. Police should warn you of the consequences of failing to provide a test sample.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: a fine of at least $1100 and not more than $1600 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 12 months;
  • for a subsequent offence: a fine of at least $1900 and not more than $2900 with mandatory disqualification for a minimum of 3 years.

Paraphernalia, fits (needles & syringes), equipment

Possession

It is legal to possess needles and syringes (‘fits’) in South Australia but it is illegal to possess any other equipment for use in administering an illegal drug. Although it is legal to get fits from an authorised needle & syringe program (NSP), it is illegal to pass them on to another person to use in taking illegal drugs.

Possession of equipment used for administration or use of cannabis is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $500.

Possession of equipment used for administration or use of other controlled drugs or plants is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $2000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.

Sale or supply

Selling or having possession of equipment used to administer a controlled drug, intending to sell it is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $10,000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.

Selling or having possession of equipment used to administer a controlled drug, intending to sell it to a child is an offence.

Maximum penalty: $20,000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.

Penalties are much higher for the sale of specific forms of paraphernalia including cocaine kits, bongs, hookahs, shishas and ice, hash or crack pipes.

Selling or having possession of paraphernalia used to administer a controlled drug, intending to sell it is an offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • for an individual person: $10,000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.
  • for a company: $50,000.

Selling or having possession of paraphernalia used to administer a controlled drug, intending to sell it to a child is an offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • for an individual person: $20,000 and/or imprisonment for 2 years.
  • for a company: $100,000.

Directors of companies can also be personally charged, convicted and punished in addition to any penalty given to their company.

Disposal of fits

South Australia does not have any specific laws for the proper disposal of fits. However, to minimise risk to yourself and others you should always dispose of fits in a hard sided, sealed container such as a hazardous waste bin.

It is unlikely that police would charge you on the basis of the minute quantities of drugs that are present in used fits. However, if you make an admission (self-administration) then a fit may be corroborating evidence. If you are concerned about used fits and trace elements you can flush them with water immediately after use but the best approach is to dispose of them in a disposal container and return them to a needle & syringe program. It is also important to be aware of what you might be carrying when you go to a needle & syringe program to pick up or return fits.

It is an offence to deposit any litter, including fits and other equipment, in a public place.

Maximum penalty: $4000.

Sex, health and the law

Consent

Any person 17 years or older can have sexual relations with another person aged 17 years or more, if they each consent.

It is an offence to have sex with a person younger than 17, or any person who does not consent.

Maximum penalty:

  • for child under 14 years: Life imprisonment.
  • for a child under 17 years: 10 years imprisonment.

It is also against the law for a person in a position of ‘care and authority’ (for example, a teacher) to have sex, or to try to have sex with a person under 18 years.

The maximum penalty is 10 years imprisonment however a person will not be convicted if at the time of the sexual intercourse their partner was 16-years or older, and –

  • the person was 17 or younger; or
  • the person rationally believed their partner was over the age of 17.

Sex work

Brothel sex work

It is illegal to run a brothel in South Australia. A brothel is defined as any place used for the purposes of prostitution or a place where people resort for prostitution.

Any person, who runs, operates, manages, or owns a brothel, or any person who receives money paid in a brothel for sexual services, is guilty of an offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: $1250 or imprisonment for 3 months.
  • for a second or subsequent offence: $2500 or imprisonment for 6 months.

Any person who rents, sublets or permits a premises to be used as a brothel commits an offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: $1250 or imprisonment for 3 months.
  • for a second or subsequent offence: $2500 or imprisonment for 6 months.

It is an offence to compel or unduly influence a person to take part in commercial sexual services.

Commercial sexual services have a broad definition in South Australia. It includes any use or display of the body for the sexual gratification of someone else. This means that even acts like naked massages for money can be considered sexual services.

Compelling a person means controlling or influencing that person in an unfair way. Compulsion will be found by a court in situations where a person:

  • threatens to use force or violence against the victim if they do not provide sexual services:
  • or controls the free movement of the victim: or
  • supplies or withdraws supply of an illicit drug.

If a person compels another person to provide sexual services, they are considered to be forcing that person into sexual servitude, which is a serious offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • if the victim is a child under the age of 14 years: imprisonment for life;
  • if the victim is a child under the age of 18 years: imprisonment for 19 years;
  • if the victim is an adult: imprisonment for 15 years.

Undue influence means acts that unfairly or improperly influence a person to continue to provide sexual services.

Maximum penalty:

  • if the victim is a child under the age of 14 years: imprisonment for life;
  • if the victim is a child under the age of 18 years: imprisonment for 12 years;
  • if the victim is an adult: imprisonment for 7 years.

Tricking a person into accepting employment in a situation, where they will be asked or expected to provide sexual services is an offence. For example, employing a person as a pole dancer or masseuse when that person will actually be expected to provide sexual services is an offence.

Maximum penalty:

  • if the victim is a child under the age of 18 years: imprisonment for 12 years;
  • if the victim is an adult: imprisonment for 7 years.

It is an offence to permit or procure a child to preform sexual services.

Maximum penalty:

  • if the victim is a child under the age of 14 years: imprisonment for life;
  • if the victim is a child under the age of 18 years: imprisonment for 9 years.

It is an offence to ask a child to preform sexual services.

Maximum penalty:

  • if the victim is a child under the age of 14 years: imprisonment for 9 years;
  • if the victim is a child under the age of 18 years: imprisonment for 3 years.

It is an offence to accept the earnings of a child who is performing sexual services.

Maximum penalty:

  • if the victim is a child under the age of 14 years: imprisonment for 9 years;
  • if the victim is a child under the age of 18 years: imprisonment for 3 years.

It is an offence to procure a person for the purposes of prostitution. This means that it is illegal to advertise sex work positions, or approach a person to encourage or persuade them to engage in sex work.

Maximum penalty:

  • for a first offence: $1250 or imprisonment for 3 months.
  • for a second or subsequent offence: $2500 or imprisonment for 6 months.

It is an offence to live off the earnings of a prostitute. The court will consider a person who is habitually in the company of a sex worker or lives with a sex worker, without any other visible form of employment or support to be living of the earnings of a prostitute.

Maximum penalty: $2500 or imprisonment for 6 months.

Home sex work

Commercial sex work from home is legal in itself. However, allowing more than one person who is not the occupant to work from the same premises, or indiscreet advertising will expose the workers to prosecution for running a brothel, because a brothel is defined as any place used for the purposes of prostitution.

Street sex work

It is illegal to solicit or loiter in a public place, or within the view or hearing of a public place, for the purposes of prostitution.

‘Soliciting’ may include any conduct (whether blatantly obvious or quite subtle) that amounts to an invitation of prostitution. Merely agreeing to do an act of prostitution, or being willing to do a job if someone asks you, is NOT soliciting. Both sex workers and clients can commit the offence of soliciting.

Maximum penalty: $750.

Blood borne viruses (BBVs) & Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

Notification requirements

In SA:

  • Hepatitis A, B, C, D, E and
  • HIV

are all controlled notifiable diseases, which means that your doctor, nurse, pathologist or hospital must notify the Government if you are diagnosed with one of these diseases.

It is an offence for a medical practitioner or health officer to fail to notify a diagnosis of a transmissible disease.

Maximum penalty: $10,000

There are rules that specify that your full name must not be provided when notifying and that your privacy is respected.

The Chief Public Health Officer may decide that it is necessary to contact your friends and acquaintances if it becomes apparent that you could have transmitted a disease to them. This is called contact tracing and is lawful if you consent or if the Chief Public Health Officer determines that disclosing your personal information will prevent further transmission of the condition or allow potentially infected people to seek medical attention. Your privacy should be respected through out the contact tracing and notification process.

It is an offence for someone to disclose your disease status, or other information obtained under public health laws, without lawful authorisation. Personal health information is exempt from freedom of information laws.

Maximum penalty: $25,000

It is an offence for an infected person to fail to give a health officer details when requested.

Maximum penalty: $10,000

It is an offence to provide false or misleading information.

Maximum penalty: $25,000

Public health law offences relevant to BBVs and STIs.

All residents of South Australia have a general duty to take reasonable measures to prevent or minimise any risk to public health caused by their conduct. A risk to public health would include exposing others to risk of transmission of a notifiable disease including Hepatitis or HIV. This could involve having sex with someone without disclosing that you were HIV positive.

It is an offence to cause a serious risk of harm to public health. The Court will look at the consequences of the risk to public health, the number of people who might have been affected, the seriousness of the risk and whether the risk could have been averted or minimised if you had acted differently.

Maximum penalty:

  • Intentionally causing serious risk: $1,000,000 and/or 10 years imprisonment
  • Recklessly causing serious risk: $500,000 and/or 7 years imprisonment
  • Causing serious risk: $120,000.

It is an offence to cause a material risk of harm to public health. A material risk of harm is less than a serious risk but cannot be a minor risk or unlikely to occur.

Maximum penalty:

  • Intentionally causing material risk: $200,000 and/or 5 years imprisonment
  • Recklessly causing material risk: $120,000 and/or 2 years imprisonment
  • Causing material risk: $120,000 or $750 infringement notice.

It is a defence to these charges to prove that you took all reasonable precautions to avoid the risk and used all care and diligence to minimises the chance of any harm occurring. The court would also want to be shown that you quickly notified the health service or appropriate authorities as soon as possible after you became aware that you had caused a risk.

South Australia has developed a Code for the Case Management of Behaviours that Present a Risk. This code sets out policies for when health officials must take action to report risky behaviours that expose people to infectious or transmissible diseases.

The Code sets out principles for managing the risk of infection or transmission of disease in a health framework by establishing processes for counselling and treating people with notifiable transmissible diseases.

There is a possibility that if you have a controlled notifiable disease, or the Chief Public Health Officer has reasonable grounds to believe that you have a controlled notifiable disease and you are behaving in a way that endangers public health or puts others at risk of infection you could be given a direction by the Chief Public Health Officer:

  • requiring you to be tested, have a medical examination or undergo treatment or health counselling;
  • preventing you from doing certain activities;
  • preventing you being in or working in certain places; or
  • requiring that you are confined or detained in a particular place.

Health directions, especially orders requiring detention or confinement should only be made as a last resort when other attempts to get the person to change or address their risky behaviour have failed.

It is an offence to fail to comply with a lawful health requirement, direction or order without a reasonable excuse.

Maximum penalty: $25,000 or $750 infringement notice.

Requirements or directions made by the Chief Public Health Officer can be challenged in the District Court. Initial orders that a person with a controlled notifiable condition be placed in detention can only last for 30 days, then the order must be reviewed by a judge of the Supreme Court. A person cannot be detained for more than 6 months unless the Supreme Court judge confirms the order.

Nationally all states and territories are supposed to uphold the important principle that the least restrictive measures of control, treatment and monitoring should be applied first when addressing risky behaviour of individuals who have HIV.

However, if you are suspected of intentionally infecting other people with a disease, health officials are instructed to refer your matter to police to pursue criminal charges.

Criminal offences relevant to BBVs and STIs

There have been at least 32 prosecutions for HIV exposure or transmission in Australia. Prosecutions have occurred in nearly every state in Australia. Criminal prosecutions are also becoming more common. If you have a transmissible disease it is your responsibility to take precautions to ensure that you minimise the risk of infecting others.

In South Australia a person who has, or thinks he/she may have, a transmissible notifiable condition, or a person who is a contact of a person with a controlled notifiable condition including HIV, must take reasonable precautions to prevent transmission of the condition.

The law in South Australia does not specifically require a person with HIV to disclose their HIV status to a prospective sexual partner but if you do not take reasonable measures to prevent transmission of a controlled notifiable disease you can be charged with a serious criminal offence.

At criminal law a person who recklessly endangers another person’s life is guilty of a criminal offence. This law can be used to charge an HIV-positive person for transmitting HIV to another person.

Reasonable precautions would include using a condom when having sex and avoiding the sharing of injecting equipment. Unsafe disposal of used fits could also be a potential ground for prosecution.

Intentionally, or recklessly exposing other people to a risk of infection with a disease can be prosecuted as a criminal offence, with serious penalties.

In South Australia if you are responsible for infecting another person with a notifiable transmissible disease such as HIV you could potentially be charged with intentionally or recklessly endangering life.

Intentional infection could be proven where you deliberately, or willingly set out to infect a person, knowing that your actions risked harm to the other person.

Recklessness could be proven if you failed to take reasonable precautions to prevent the transmission of a notifiable transmissible disease such as HIV, where you knew there was a risk or should have considered the risk that you could infect someone and you knew that if you did risk infecting someone that harm would likely be the result.

Maximum penalty:

  • for an act or omission endangering life: 15-18 years imprisonment.
  • for an act or omission causing serious harm: 10 – 12 years imprisonment.
  • for an act or omission causing harm: 5 – 7 years imprisonment.

Discrimination

What is discrimination?

Discrimination involves treating someone unfavourably or unfairly because that person has a specific characteristic or attribute.

Discrimination can also include imposing a certain requirement or condition on a person because of a characteristic or attribute where the different treatment is not reasonable.

Grounds for discrimination

In South Australia, it is unlawful to discriminate on the basis of:

  • age;
  • association with a child (in customer service);
  • caring responsibilities;
  • chosen gender;
  • disability;
  • marital or domestic partnership status;
  • pregnancy;
  • race;
  • religious appearance or dress (in work or study);
  • sex;
  • sexuality; or
  • spouse or partner’s identity.

In what circumstances can you complain about discrimination?

You can’t complain about discrimination in all areas of life. This is because the Government does not normally regulate private behaviour or relationships between individuals (unless there is threat of violence or other criminal offences involved).

Generally people are free to think and speak what they like about each other. For instance you cannot claim that your family or neighbour discriminates against you because of who you are friends with.

However, discrimination law does prevent discrimination in social or public areas of life, where you might have a reasonable expectation to be treated the same as anyone else, despite the fact that you may be of a different race, or have a different gender identity or are disabled.

In South Australia areas of life where discrimination is unlawful are:

  • work – you cannot be fired or sacked, or given harder work, worse conditions or unequal pay only because of your race, age, gender identity, disability, political or religious beliefs etc.
  • education – you cannot be refused a place in a school or university course only because of your race, age, gender identity, disability, political or religious beliefs etc.
  • land, goods and services – you cannot be refused a sale, or service in a restaurant or health care, or access to public transport, or help from the police only because of your race, age, gender identity, disability, political or religious beliefs etc.
  • association or qualifying body – you cannot be refused membership of an association or profession only because of your race, age, gender identity, disability, political or religious beliefs etc.
  • accommodation – you cannot be refused accommodation in a motel or in public housing only because of your race, age, gender identity, disability, political or religious beliefs etc.
  • superannuation – you cannot be refused superannuation or have your superannuation managed differently only because of your race or disability.

It is important to note that there are a number of exceptions to these general rules. If you feel you have been discriminated against seek legal advice or contact the South Australian Equal Opportunity Commission.

Discrimination laws also cover sexual harassment and victimisation.

The Racial Vilification Act also prohibits racial vilification. Vilification is a public act (including speaking, writing and broadcasting) that incites hatred towards, serious contempt for, or severe ridicule of a person or group of people on the basis of their race, colour, or national, or ethnic origin.

The meaning of disability discrimination

Being discriminated against on the basis of ‘disability’ includes being discriminated against on the ground that you are infected with a specific disease including Hepatitis C or HIV/AIDS.

It is not clear whether having a ‘drug dependency’ can be considered a ground for discrimination.

Generally drug addiction will not count as a disability. Temporary intoxication from drug use is not a disability.

There have been a number of court cases that have considered that a dependency on methadone or buprenorphine could in certain circumstances be considered a disability.

In these cases former heroin addicts had been stabilised on methadone or buprenorphine pharmacotherapy and were being subjected to workplace harassment and unfair treatment because of their history of drug use. The courts held that someone who was living a normal, functional life with the help of legally prescribed methadone or buprenorphine could still be suffering from the disability of methadone or buprenorphine dependence, because of the severity and disabling nature of withdrawals if they were not able to maintain their treatment regime.

These cases established that discrimination of people on the basis that they were on a pharmacotherapy program could be disability discrimination and would be unlawful.

HIV and Hepatitis-C related discrimination is also unlawful.

There is also legal protection against discrimination for people with disabilities under the Federal Disability Discrimination Act.

How to complain about discrimination

If you believe you have been discriminated against you may be able to make a complaint.

Not all unfair treatment will be considered to be discrimination.

Complaints can be made in writing to the South Australian Equal Opportunity Commission. The Commission may only investigate complaints that have been made in writing.

The Commission will attempt to investigate your complaint and then conduct a conciliation or negotiation about each side’s story and reasons for their actions. If an agreement does not come out of the negotiation, the complaint will be referred to the Equal Opportunity Tribunal which has the power to hear and investigate the complaint and then to make legally binging orders.

The Tribunal can order that the complaint be dismisses, or if the complaint is upheld, that compensation or damages are paid, an apology given or an order that the discriminatory behaviour stopped.

Complaints under the Federal Disability Discrimination Act can be made to the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC). The AHRC can be reached on1300 369 711 or at http://www.humanrights.gov.au.

For more information on addressing discrimination please refer to AIVL’s Know Your Rights webpage at http://www.aivl.org.au/knowyourrights.

‘The Law’

Controlled Substances Act 1984 – sets out offences for possession, administration, supply, trafficking manufacturing and cultivation. Establishes a simple cannabis offence decriminalisation scheme. Authorises general drug detection by sniffer dogs or other electronic detection methods. Imports the SUSMP.

Controlled Substances (Controlled Drugs, Precursors And Plants) Regulations 2000 – lists controlled drugs in Schedule 1 and specifies quantities used to determine the penalties a person faces on conviction for possession, supply, trafficking, manufacture, cultivation etc. Defines simple cannabis offences and sets the infringement fee (expiation fee) which must be paid in order to prevent prosecution for a simple cannabis offence.

Controlled Substances (Poisons) Regulations 2011 – sets out additional requirements for prescriptions and supply of schedule 8 drugs listed in the SUSMP by medical practitioners and pharmacists

Summary Offences Act 1953 – regulates the operation and management of brothels and sets out offences of procurement for prostitution and living off the earnings of prostitution. Sets out police investigation, search and arrest powers.

Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Act 2007 – sets out additional police search and forensic powers.

Criminal Law Consolidation Act 1935 – Sets out offences of causing harm to another person and acts endangering life that may be used to prosecute people who place others at risk of infection with HIV or other controlled notifiable conditions. Sets out sexual offences and defines the meaning of commercial sexual services. Sets out offences of sexual servitude, recruitment and use of children for sexual services.

Road Traffic Act 1961 – Division 5 sets out drink and drug driving offences and penalties.

Road Traffic (Miscellaneous) Regulations 1999 – lists the prescribed drugs for the offence of driving with a prescribed drug present in oral fluid. Sets out procedures for blood and breath testing and the warnings that must be given to people who refuse to be tested.

Public Health Act 2011 – sets out offences of causing or risking serious or material harm to public health. Defines notifiable and controlled notifiable conditions. Gives powers to authorised offices to take action to control or reduce the threat or spread of a notifiable condition. Gives the Chief Public Health Officer the power to give health directions requiring a person who has a controlled notifiable condition to undergo treatment or counselling or be detained.

Public Health (Notifiable and Controlled Notifiable Conditions) Regulation 2012 – lists notifiable and controlled notifiable conditions.

Equal Opportunity Act 1984 – sets out discrimination law in South Australia.