Prohibited Weapons

The offence of possessing Prohibited Weapons is in section 5 of the Control of Weapons Act 1990 in Victoria. It is a criminal offence to be found in possession of a prohibited weapon if you do not have the required licence to do so.

Have you been accused of this offence?

Police Interview
If you have been arrested for possessing Prohibited Weapons, or if you know that police want to interview you about the offence, it is vital that you contact us for assistance. We will arrange a conference with one of our lawyers who will provide you with clear legal advice about how to handle the interview process.

Police will only interview you for this if they suspect you have possessed Prohibited Weapons. They are trained to ask questions in a way to make you seem like you’re lying even though you are not. You will have important questions about the interview, such as:

  • Do I need to go to the interview?
  • Will I be remanded?
  • Should I answer the questions?
Our lawyers can answer these questions for you.

Pleading Not Guilty
If you have received a summons for an offence such as possessing Prohibited Weapons, you may also have been served with a bundle of other documents made up of witness statements, expert reports and photographs. This is called the preliminary police brief.

It is important to seek advice from an experienced criminal lawyer when charged with any offence, and this is particularly so in relation to possessing Prohibited Weapons. Your criminal lawyer will assess the evidence in the police brief, request any outstanding material, engage independent experts to analyse forensic material if necessary, and represent you in Court.

Pleading Guilty
If you are pleading guilty to possessing Prohibited Weapons, a criminal lawyer’s role is extremely important. For example, one of our criminal lawyers will step you through the Court process, advise you how to dress, how to behave in Court and will make detailed submissions to the Court explaining your personal circumstances. Our lawyers are skilled advocates who know what works to get the fairest outcome.

Which court will the case be heard in?
This is a summary offence and so will be heard by the Magistrates’ Court.

What is the legal definition of ‘Prohibited Weapon’?
Section 3 of the Act defines ‘prohibited weapon’ as ‘an imitation firearm or an article that is prescribed by the regulations to be a prohibited weapon’.

Schedule 3 of the Control of Weapons Regulations lists weapons which are prohibited.

Examples of Prohibited Weapons
  • Having a taser in your house
  • Having an imitation firearm
  • Having a flick knife in your bag without a lawful excuse
The legislation for this offence can be found on section 5 of Control of Weapons Act 1990.

Elements of the offence
The Prosecution must prove that:

  1. the accused had a prohibited weapon; and
  2. the accused did not have an exception under section 8B of the Act.
“Can the Police prove that the weapon was in your possession?”
A defence to this may arise where an accused did not intend to possess the prohibited weapon. The Act also provides for a defence if an accused is an employee of a person who has the approval to possess a prohibited weapon, and was using it in the course of their employment.

Questions in cases like this
  • Do you have a permit for the weapon?
  • Do you have a lawful reason for possessing the weapon?
  • Were you in fact in possession of the weapon?
If you have been charged with this offence, you should call us to discuss your case and possible defences. Deciding on whether to plead guilty or not has huge consequences for you and should be made after proper discussion with one of our experienced criminal lawyers.

Maximum penalty for section 5 of the Control of Weapons Act 1990
The maximum penalty for (s5 of the Control of Weapons Act 1990) is a fine of 240 penalty units or imprisonment for 2 years.

Other important resources
Case studies