Note: This is part two of a series. You can read part one here

Applicants for a gun owner’s licence are required to prove a ‘genuine reason’ to possess a firearm. Under Australian law, personal protection is not in any way considered a genuine reason. The carrying of knives and blades without reasonable excuse is also a summary offence. In my state of New South Wales, the Summary Offences Act 1988 – Sect 11C (3) clearly states, “It is not a reasonable excuse for the purposes of this section for a person to have custody of a knife solely for the purpose of self defence or the defence of another person.” Carrying a knife without reasonable excuse would almost certainly land you in court and facing a heavy fine and/or criminal conviction.

Let me provide a relatively recent and high-profile example concerning the use of a knife for self-defence purposes in Australia. In 2011, 30-year-old convicted criminal Azzam Naboulsi was killed by 54-year-old Donald Brooke during a home invasion in southwest Sydney. Naboulsi was armed with a stun gun and was killed by Brooke following a confrontation in Brooke’s kitchen. Naboulsi had stolen jewelry and money from him.

A short altercation ensued, and Brooke stabbed Naboulsi in the arm and chest before the thief ran from the scene. Naboulsi died shortly after. Brooke had to wait for over four months to learn whether or not he would be charged for his role in the incident. Even though police initially informed him that he could face manslaughter charges for fatally wounding the career criminal, the culmination of their exhaustive investigation saw them recommend to the coroner that no charges be applied because he had acted in self defence.