What Happens when you are Caught with a Knife?

If you are caught with a knife, the short answer is you can get a fine and therefore have a criminal record for the knife you have on you.
Note: This includes the knife you have on you for cutting fruit and going fishing.

ETB Legal attends local courts across NSW and can defend you in matters involving summary offences such as this one.
We can help you have this charge dismissed before it even formally is seen by the Magistrate.
We have succeeded in helping clients obtain a dismissal of these charges and having them removed at an early stage.
ETB Legal can help you attain a ‘section 10 dismissal‘ with this charge and /or any other charges that you may have received with this knife charge.

Police can charge you under section 11C of the Summary offences Act in NSW which states:

Section 11C – Custody of knife in public place or school:

(1) A person must not, without reasonable excuse (proof of which lies on the person), have in his or her custody a knife in a public place or a school.

Man caught holding a Knife in his hand image

Caught with a Knife? ETB Legal can help

Section 11c Maximum penalty: 20 penalty units or imprisonment for 2 years, or both.

(2) Without limitation, it is a reasonable excuse for the purposes of this section for a person to have custody of a knife, if:
(a) the custody is reasonably necessary in all the circumstances for any of the following:
(i) the lawful pursuit of the person’s occupation, education or training,
(ii) the preparation or consumption of food or drink,
(iii) participation in a lawful entertainment, recreation or sport,
(iv) the exhibition of knives for retail or other trade purposes,
(v) an organised exhibition by knife collectors,
(vi) the wearing of an official uniform,
(vii) genuine religious purposes, or
(b) the custody is reasonably necessary in all the circumstances during travel to or from or incidental to an activity referred to in paragraph (a), or
(c) the custody is of a kind prescribed by the regulations.

(3) However, it is not a reasonable excuse for the purposes of this section for a person to have custody of a knife solely for the purpose of self defence or the defence of another
(6) The regulations may provide that this section does not apply to or in relation to any specified class or description of knife.

Easy Points to consider
– Police can charge you with an offence under section 11C of the Summary Offences Act that has a maximum penalty of 20 penalty units and/or/both 2 years imprisonment.
– elements of the offence-  you need to be in a ‘public place’ or ‘school’.

Fighting the offence
You simply need to establish you have a reasonable excuse for the knife.
– Do you have proof of why you have the knife?
– Do you use it for work or legal recreational use?

The actual law states that the offence can only be proven if you do not have a reasonable excuse ie  being “without reasonable excuse”.

Other notes on what the law actually says:
– the lawful pursuit of a persons occupation, education or training – section 11C (2).
– participation in lawful entertainment recreation or sport – section 11C(2)

Our advice is to keep relevant documentation together of any proof of purchase of the knife or any other relevant items like fishing gear.

Case example:
John is 19 years old, works as an apprentice mechanic and has grown up on the coastline. He has been fishing with his grandfather all his life since he was 5 years old.
The police pull over John in his car one night for speeding. The police decide to search  John’s car after smelling what they believe is marijuana and find a fishing knife in John’s
car. The police arrest John, seize John’s knife, all his cash, green substance and fine him for speeding.
John is now required to attend court for charges involving possession of a knife, possess drug and speeding.

John has never been to court before and has no criminal record. He wants to work and travel abroad and does not wish for a criminal record to hinder his life.

Don’t wait another minute to get the legal representation you need. Call the Sydney criminal lawyers who can help. Your first conference is free. Call 0412 915 247 today.

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