Customs Act 1901


Division 1 - Powers of officers  

Subdivision DA - Seizure of certain goods in transit  

SECTION 203DA   When seizure warrants for goods in transit can be issued  

203DA(1)   [Grounds for issue of warrants]  

A judicial officer may issue a warrant to seize goods on or in particular premises if the judicial officer is satisfied by information on oath that the Minister has reasonable grounds for suspecting that:

(a) the goods are, or within the next 72 hours will be, on or in the premises; and

(b) the goods have been or will be brought into Australia on a ship or aircraft and are intended to be kept on board the ship or aircraft for shipment on to a place outside Australia, without being imported into Australia or exported from Australia; and

(c) the goods satisfy either or both of the following subparagraphs:

(i) the goods are connected, whether directly or indirectly, with the carrying out of a terrorist act, whether a terrorist act has occurred, is occurring or is likely to occur;

(ii) the existence or the shipment of the goods prejudices, or is likely to prejudice, Australia's defence or security or international peace and security.

203DA(2)   [Matters to be stated in warrants]  

If a judicial officer issues a warrant, the judicial officer is to state in the warrant:

(a) a description of the goods to which the warrant relates; and

(b) a description of the premises on or in which the goods are believed to be located; and

(c) the name of the authorised person who, unless that authorised person inserts the name of another authorised person in the warrant, is to be responsible for executing the warrant; and

(d) the time at which the warrant expires (see subsection (3)); and

(e) whether the warrant may be executed at any time or only during particular hours.

203DA(3)   [Time stated in warrant]  

The time stated in the warrant under paragraph (2)(d) as the time at which the warrant expires must be a time that is not later than the end of the seventh day after the day on which the warrant is issued.


If a warrant is issued at 3 pm on a Monday, the expiry time specified must not be later than midnight on Monday in the following week.

203DA(4)   [Authority to seize goods]  

The judicial officer is also to state in the warrant that it authorises the seizure of goods found on or in the premises in the course of the search that the executing officer or a person assisting believes on reasonable grounds to be special forfeited goods.

203DA(5)   [Issue of successive warrants allowed]  

Paragraph (2)(d) and subsection (3) do not prevent the issue of successive warrants in relation to the same premises.

203DA(6)   [Warrants by telephone or other electronic means]  

If the application for the warrant is made under section 203M, this section (other than subsection (3)) applies as if:

(a) subsection (1) referred to 48 hours rather than 72 hours; and

(b) paragraph (2)(d) required the judicial officer to state in the warrant the period for which the warrant is to remain in force, which must not be more than 48 hours.

203DA(7)   [Seizure of goods in another state or territory]  

A judicial officer of a particular State or Territory may issue a warrant in respect of the seizure of goods on or in premises in another State or Territory.


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