Drug Court Dandenong
The client was charged with a number of dishonesty offences (Obtain Property by Deception, Theft, Handling Stolen Goods), committed over a period of approximately 7 months. These charges were spread over 3 courts and were listed on different dates.
The client suffered from long term mental health issues which were exacerbated by years of drug abuse (both illegal and prescription). The client had also breached a Community Corrections Order (‘CCO’) which complicated the matter and meant that the likely outcome would be immediate gaol. Due to the serious nature of the offences, the client was facing a substantial term of imprisonment.
Our solicitor consolidated the charges and arranged for them to be heard together at Dandenong Magistrates’ Court. We then made a submission to the Magistrate that the client was a suitable candidate for Drug Court (a specialist court only available at Dandenong).
This required submissions in relation to the key eligibility requirements of a Drug Treatment Order (‘DTO’). One of the requirements is that the client must live in the Drug Court ‘catchment area’. As the client was homeless prior to the application, our criminal solicitor referred the client to various community organisations, in order to obtain stable accommodation in the catchment area. The accommodation was secured and the client progressed through to the next stage of Drug Court.
The client was ultimately found to be a suitable candidate and placed on a DTO in Dandenong, thus avoiding immediate imprisonment. This order requires that the client commit to treatment and assessment for the period of the order (usually 2 years). The program is intense and completely geared towards getting people off drugs. If the DTO is successfully completed, no further action will be taken by the Court.