Possessing And Acquiring Handcuffs Or Thumbcuffs
What the law says
Sections 67 of the Weapons Act Queensland states:
- A person must not, without reasonable excuse, possess or acquire a restricted item.
- For subsection (1), it is not a reasonable excuse to possess or acquire a restricted item for crowd or traffic control.
(Restricted Item means an item prescribed as a restricted item under the Weapons Categories Regulations).
Restricted Items (Act, s 67) Weapons Categories Regulation 1997
- (a) Handcuffs, thumbcuffs or other similar restraints;
- (b) Nunchaku or kung-fu sticks or any similar device which consists of 2 hard non flexible sticks, clubs, pipes or rode connected by a length of rope, cord, wire or chain constructed or designed to be used in connection with the practice of a system of self defence and which if used offensively against a person is or are capable of causing bodily harm;
- (c) A billy club, a baton or any device constructed or designed as a telescopic baton not being a toy or a category M weapon, that if used is capable of causing bodily harm;
- (d) Any studded glove which if used offensively against a person capable of causing bodily harm.
Category M weapons
Each of the following is a category M weapon-
- (a) any clothing, apparel, accessory or article designed to disguise any weapon or other cutting or piercing instrument capable of causing bodily harm;
- (b) any of the following that is primarily designed for the control of native or feral animals-
- (i) an antipersonnel gas of a corrosive, noxious or irritant nature or that is capable of causing bodily harm and any weapon capable of discharging the gas by any means;
- (ii) an antipersonnel substance of a corrosive, noxious or irritant nature or that is capable of discharging the substance by any means;
- (c) any knife so designed or constructed so as to be used as a weapon that while the knife is held in 1 hand, the blade may be released by that hand;
- (d) any clothing, apparel, adornment or accessory designed for use as a weapon or a cutting or piercing instrument capable of causing bodily harm;
- (e) any incendiary or inflammable device containing any substance capable of causing bodily harm or damage to property that is primarily designed for vegetation management;
- (f) any pistol crossbow designed to be discharged by the use of 1 hand (that is not a toy pistol crossbow) that when discharged is capable of causing damage or injury to property or capable of causing bodily harm;
- (g) any crossbow designed to be discharged by the use of 2 hand that, when discharged, is capable of causing damage or injury to property or capable of causing bodily harm;
- (h) a chinese throwing iron that is a hard non flexible plate having 3 or more radiating points with 1 or more sharp edges in the shape of a polygon, trefoil, cross, star, diamond or geometric shape and constructed or designed to be thrown as a weapon;
- (i) a flail or similar device constructed and designed as a weapon consisting of in part a striking head and which, if used offensively against a person, is capable of causing bodily harm;
- (j) a device known as a 'manrikiguisari' or 'kusari' consisting of a length of rope, cord, wire or chain fastened at each end to a geometrically shaped weight or handgrip and constructed or designed to be used as a weapon;
- (k) a device known as a knuckleduster or a device made or adopted for use as a knuckleduster and which, if used offensively against a person, is capable of causing bodily harm;
- (l) a weighted glove designed or constructed to be used as a weapon;
- (m) a mace or any similar article (other than a ceremonial mace made for and used solely as a symbol of authority on ceremonial occasions);
- (n) any device, not a toy, constructed or designed as a telescopic baton, the extension of which is actuated by the operation of a mechanical trigger.
Principles of Act
- The principles underlying this act are as follows-
- (a) weapon possession and their use are subordinate to the need to ensure public and individual safety;
- (b) public and individual safety is improved by imposing strict controls on the possession of weapons and requiring the safe and secure storage and carriage of weapons.
- The object of this act is to prevent the misuse of weapons.
What the police must prove
In order for the Police to prove their case at Court, they must prove each of the following matters beyond a reasonable doubt.
- The accused without a reasonable excuse possessed or acquired a restricted item.
It will be necessary for the Police in every offence to prove that the accused was the person who committed the offence. Click here to learn more about identification evidence.
The Maximum penalty for the offence of Possessing and Acquiring Restricted Items is 10 penalty units.
Which court will hear the matter
This matter is simple which means it is dealt with in the Magistrates Court.
Possible defences to this offence include but are not limited to
- The accused had a lawful excuse for possessing or acquiring the restricted items; or
- The accused did not possess or acquire the restricted items; or
- It was not the accused.
Criminal Law Article written by Bill Potts (a Queensland criminal defence lawyer who is experienced in Possessing and Acquiring Restricted Items matters)