4:31pm Monday 16th July 2012
A MAN said to have been growing £3,500 worth of cannabis for pain relief from arthritis got a “last chance” from a judge.
Police had found 23 plants with a hydroponic system at the Padiham home of Kevin Dooley, 53, in an early morning raid on February 29.
When cautioned, the defendant had told officers: “It’s for personal use, for arthritis in my hip and knee.”
Dooley admitted producing cannabis, between February 14 and March 1. He was given a 12 month supervision order at Burnley Crown Court.
Michael Wallbank, prosecuting, said at about 5am, police went to Dooley’s home. They went upstairs, had difficulty opening one of the rooms and had to be helped by the defendant.
Officers discovered the 23 plants and Dooley was arrested and cautioned.
He was taken to the police station, admitted the operation was his and said he had borrowed money. Dooley, of Berkeley Cresent, told officers the drugs were for his own personal use.
Mr Wallbank said the plants and equipment were seized and two plants were sent for analysis.
The potential yield from the plants was estimated to be 354 grams and the court was told the street value of the drugs would be £3,540.
The hearing was told the defendant had a history of “petty offending”.
James Heyworth, for Dooley, said: “This is a genuine, own use, production operation.
The barrister continued: “This is out of character. He has no previous drug-related offending. He was growing it for his own use.”
Sentencing, Judge Beverley Lunt told the defendant: “A lot of people live in pain. They don't grow illegal drugs to alleviate the pain. They go and see their doctor.”
The judge added: “This is the last chance you are going to get.”
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