There are two drug diversion programs in Queensland, the Drug Diversion Assessment Program (DDAP) and Court Ordered Diversion.
The programs are aimed at diverting minor drug offenders away from the Court system, by referring offenders to a relevant drug education session. Diversion is provided as an alternative to the other penalties available to the Court, such as issuing a fine or imposing a community based order.
Drug Diversion Assessment Program (DDAP)
DDAP is offered to offenders by Police as an alternative to issuing a formal charge. You are eligible to attend DDAP if:-
- You are questioned in relation to a minor drug offence involving possession of cannabis;
- You have made admissions in relation to the offence; and
- You have not previously been offered DDAP.
The Police must explain the requirements of DDAP to you, and you must agree to participate in DDAP. Should you refuse to participate, the Police may formally charge you and you may be required to go to Court.
If you agree to participate in DDAP, you must attend a drug education session, as directed by Police.
Court Ordered Diversion
Court Ordered Diversion is a diversion program that is offered by the Court, after you have been charged with an offence.
You are eligible for Court Ordered Diversion if:-
- You have been charged with an eligible offence;
- You plead guilty to the offence;
- You have not participated in diversion more than once previously.
You will not be eligible if you have previously been convicted of a violent offence, an offence of sexual nature or a drug related offence that was dealt with on indictment (in the District or Supreme Court).
You will only be offered diversion if you have been charged with an eligible offence. There are two eligible offences:-
- Possession of a dangerous drug; and
- Possession of a thing used in connection with the administration or consumption of a dangerous drug (commonly referred to as possession of utensils).
To be eligible, the dangerous drug in your possession must be for your own personal use and must not exceed a particular quantity.
What happens if I am ordered to attend drug diversion?
If you are eligible for drug diversion, the Court will ask whether you would like to attend the drug education session. If you are willing to participate, you will be placed on a Recognisance Order requiring you to attend the session. If you attend the session, the Order will expire and you will not be further punished. If you do not attend the session, the recognisance (a sum of money) will be forfeited and you will be resentenced for the original offence.
Why should I attend drug diversion?
Your participation in the program may be beneficial to you. You will not have a conviction recorded for the offence, and you will participate in an educational program that can reduce your chances of reoffending.
Please do not hesitate to contact our office on (07) 4963 2000 or via our online contact form should you have any queries.