Be Prepared this Festival Season

Since the reinstitution of crowded gatherings following the brief (but significant) pause in society as a consequence of COVID-19, people of all ages are all enjoying getting themselves back out of the house and into the free air.

For many, a music festival is a great way to let your hair down and enjoy some well-earned frivolity.

Music Festivals, fun as they are, will often a bashing in the media due to the impossible-to-miss stigma that often associates itself with any partygoer: drugs.

When it comes to attendance at music festivals, it goes without saying that there is a struggle between Police upholding the law and partygoers upholding the “fun”.

But what if you’re caught with a large amount? Maybe you’re planning on giving some to a friend, does that make you guilty by association? The short answer, is likely yes. In Queensland, this could constitute both possession and supply of dangerous drugs.

In Queensland, the Drugs Misuse Act 1986 (QLD) outlines that party drugs can generally be sorted into 2 categories:

  1. Schedule 1: Cocaine, LSD, MDMA, Ecstacy
  2. Schedule 2: Cannabis and Morphine

These drugs are then categorised by quantity referred to as “schedule 3” or “schedule 4” and this is often a determining factor in the maximum penalty which may apply to the charge (generally, this is a term of imprisonment).

Possession can be physical or non-physical and may apply in circumstances where:

  1. You have knowledge or control of the drug; or
  2. The drugs are found in your property (i.e. your car or house).

Supply of a dangerous drug can apply in circumstances where:

  1. You give, distribute, sell, administer, transport or supply drugs; or
  2. You offer to do any of the above.


If you or a friend have had to face the music after being caught with drugs, always follow these next steps:


What to Do If You are Stopped By Police at a Festival for a Search

  1. Be polite and stay calm. There is no rush for this process to occur. Do not be
  2. Ask that a friend films the interaction from a safe distance.
    • You can legally film the police in a public place if you are not affecting
      their ability to do their job or harassing them.
  3. Ask that they activate their body worn cameras.
  4. Ask all the officers present for their name and station.
  5. Ask why you have been stopped.
  6. Ask what their reasonable suspicion is.
  7. Provide your name, address and ID (it is an offence to refuse to provide this
  8. Inform the police member clearly and politely that you object to a search and
    do not consent.
  9. Comply with the search. Do not resist or argue with them.
  10. Note as much information down as soon as possible after the search, no
    matter what the result.

If police find drugs on you they may wish to interview you, either at the station or in ‘the field’. These next steps are important:

Call us first for advice. If you cannot call us, answer no comment to every question asked of you. If you are charged, you will likely be given a notice to appear at Court.

Contact a lawyer as soon as you are able. A criminal law firm like ours can assist you in achieving the best possible outcome at Court. If the search was unlawful, it may be possible to seek a withdrawal of the charges or contest the charges and be

Enjoy Your Festival

You have the right to silence. You have the right to bodily integrity. You have the right to party without being victimised by Police. The fact is that the police can search you for so many reasons. Be polite and respectful and you are entitled to expect that the Police officers will treat you same way

Contact the Criminal Lawyers here at Greenhalgh Pickard Solicitors for an initial consultation. Our offices are conveniently located in Buderim, Caloundra, Coolum or Minyama.



The information contained in this article is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to provide legal advice or substitute for the advice of a professional. This information does not consider your personal circumstances and may not reflect the most current legal developments. Should you need advice, please contact our firm for targeted information relating to personal your situation. 


Greenhalgh Pickard’s Criminal Lawyer