Balisong trainers, also known as butterfly knives, are designed to be easy to conceal and quick to deploy. This makes them a popular weapon for criminal activities.
But are balisong trainers illegal in Australia? Yes. Balisong trainers are illegal in Australia. Possession, use, or import of these knives is illegal, and those caught breaking the law face harsh consequences. The reason behind the prohibition of balisong trainers in Australia is their potential to cause harm.
These knives have been linked to many attacks and homicides in Australia, prompting the Weapons Prohibition Act 1998 to outlaw them (NSW). By the way, we will discuss every aspect of the topic in this article to clarify things about balisong trainers. Keep reading to learn more.
Quick Legal Facts
- Statewide Preemption: Yes
- Schools: Possessing a dangerous weapon, including knives, on public or school grounds is strictly prohibited.:
- Critical Dimensions: None noted
Legal Framework Around Balisong Trainers In Australia
Australia has strict laws and regulations regarding weapons and firearms to ensure public safety. The laws and regulations surrounding weapons in Australia are enforced at both the federal and state/territory levels. After all, the use of knives makes up 54% of weapons used in illegal activity.
Here is data on a study done on the possession of prohibited weapons across males and females in Australia in 2015.
The federal government has the power to regulate the importation and exportation of weapons. In contrast, the states and territories can regulate the possession, use, and sale of weapons.
Likewise, the laws governing weapons in Australia are outlined in the National Firearms Agreement, implemented following the Port Arthur massacre in 1996. The agreement aims to reduce the risk of firearm-related harm by regulating firearms ownership, storage, and use.
Accordingly, Balisong trainers are illegal in Australia, and their possession, use, or import is prohibited by the Weapons Prohibition Act 1998 (NSW) and other state and territory laws.
The act classifies balisong trainers as a “prohibited weapon.” Their possession is only permitted for authorized personnel, such as law enforcement officers and military personnel.
Penalties And Punishment For Carrying Balisong Trainers
The following are the specific penalties for carrying balisong trainers in Australia:
1. Penalty For Possession Of A Prohibited Weapon
If you are found to be in possession of a prohibited weapon, including a balisong trainer, you can be charged with an offense. The maximum penalty for possessing a prohibited weapon is 2 years in prison, as long as it is not a firearm.
This penalty will also depend on other factors. For example, the Supreme Court of ACT ruled in Queen (Crown) vs. NF with four years for possession of two Balisong trainers.
2. Penalty For Carrying A Prohibited Weapon In A Public Place
If you are caught carrying a prohibited weapon, such as a balisong trainer, in a public place, the penalty can be higher than if you were caught with the weapon in your home. In such cases, the maximum penalty is up to 2 years in prison.
3. Penalty For Using A Prohibited Weapon To Commit A Crime
If you use a prohibited weapon, such as a balisong trainer, to commit a crime, the penalty can be severe. 14 years is the maximum penalty for using a prohibited weapon to commit a crime.
It is essential to note that the above penalties are maximum, and the actual punishment can vary depending on the offense’s circumstances and the court’s discretion.
Besides, it is also crucial to be aware of the laws surrounding prohibited weapons and to avoid carrying or using them to avoid legal repercussions.
Exceptions In The Knife Law Of Balisong Trainers
While balisong trainers are illegal in Australia, there are exceptions to the knife laws that govern their use, and they include.
1. Having A Genuine Reason
One such exception is requiring a person to have a reasonable excuse for possessing the knife. This exception is outlined in Section 11C of the Weapons Prohibition Act 1998 (NSW).
According to Section 11C, a person may have a reasonable excuse for possessing a prohibited weapon, including a balisong trainer, if they can demonstrate that the possession is for a lawful purpose. Examples of lawful purposes include:
- Using the knife for theatrical production
- For work
- Participation in a sporting event
2. Being A Collector
Another exception to the knife laws regarding balisong trainers is for collectors. Collectors can own and display balisong trainers as part of their collection if they comply with the relevant requirements.
However, collectors must apply for a collector’s license, which outlines the conditions under which they can own and display prohibited weapons.
It is essential to note that collectors are only permitted to carry their balisong trainers inside their homes or places of display, and they must be kept securely and out of reach of unauthorized persons.
Arguments For And Against Balisong Trainers
There is a lot of debate in regard to the illegality of the Balisong trainers. Here is a deep look into both sides.
1. Arguments In Favor Of Balisong Trainers
Balisong trainers are popular among knife enthusiasts and collectors. They are considered aesthetically pleasing and a unique addition to any collection. Additionally, they require a high degree of skill to handle, making them a popular item for those interested in mastering the art of knife manipulation.
2. Arguments Against Balisong Trainers
Opponents of balisong trainers argue that their potential to cause harm outweighs any benefits.
Balisong trainers can be easily concealed and quickly deployed, making them popular for criminal activities. Balisong trainers have been associated with many assaults and homicides in Australia.
3. Examination Of Both Sides Of The Debate
The debate surrounding the legality of balisong trainers in Australia is complex.
Ultimately, the decision to own or use a balisong trainer in Australia should be weighed against the potential legal and safety risks.
Purchasing Balisong Trainers in Australia
As balisong trainers are illegal in Australia, there is no legal way to purchase them. If you want to own a balisong trainer, you can explore legal alternatives, such as opting for balisong trainers that are solely designed for training purposes and have no blade.
Importing balisong trainers to Australia is strictly prohibited. Those found guilty of importing prohibited weapons can face severe penalties, including fines and imprisonment.
Moreover, purchasing balisong trainers from overseas sellers may result in issues with customs and border protection and legal ramifications for importing prohibited weapons into the country.
If you are still wondering, “are Balisong Trainers illegal in Australia?” they are illegal in Australia. Also, arguments exist for and against their use. So, it is crucial to be aware of the legal implications of purchasing balisong trainers and to explore legal alternatives.
While they can help learn proper knife-handling techniques, they can also be dangerous and increase the likelihood of accidents and injuries. If you are interested in purchasing a balisong trainer in Australia, ensure that you buy a legal trainer and declare it at the border if you are importing it.