By Greg de Hoedt
A medicinal cannabis consumer has been handed a 12 month suspended sentence after it was discovered that he was growing 100 plants in his St Anne’s home.
Neil Holmes, 49 – who uses cannabis for his dyspraxia, was growing it for his own personal use but it “would have taken him a long time to smoke it all.” Original article found here.
Det Con Matt Haylett, from Blackpool CID, said it was a large amount of cannabis for personal use adding: “Anonymous information came in and police executed a warrant at his address and a cannabis farm was found at the location.
“There was no evidence he was dealing the cannabis.”
In an outhouse the police found 25 “well established” plants with another 73 plants in earlier stages of growth.
Officers also found a bag of cannabis bush with a street value of £184, presumably fan leaves. The cannabis plants were estimated to have a street value of between £3,685 and £5,528.
Preston Crown Court heard how Holmes readily accepted the drugs were his own, and claimed he used them for dyspraxia.
Holmes must also serve a three-month curfew. We are not sure how this curfew serves the community any service as he was not involved in any antisocial behaviour.
Many people may think that 25 plants may be a large number to need to be growing for personal or medical use but if you take into consideration that people require a range of different strains, especially for medicinal use it starts to seem more reasonable.
In the US state of California patients with a Medical Marijuana Card can grow up to 99 plants for personal use and if they go in to a collective with a group of patients they can even get raised plant limits.
Cannabis is not just for smoking either, many patients prefer to make edibles which are infused cannabis foods. This requires more cannabis and again if it is being used medicinally it will increase the amount needed as the ‘high’ feeling is not mainly what the patient is looking for, it is symptom relief.
The fact that Mr Holmes has walked away without a custodial sentence is encouraging. It means that some courts are willing to accept that patients use and grow their own cannabis, therefore not involving them or contributing to organised crime and see that it is not really a crime.
The unfortunate unjust problem with the justice system is that despite Mr Holmes freedom to walk away – technically a free man – he still has a criminal record for treating his medical condition with a plant that appears to be causing no harm to his life other than the law deciding to breach the peace at his property after someone snitched him up. The courts have not gained from this, justice has not prevailed and yet another patient has had his life turned upside down, his medicine stolen and the humiliation of being labelled a drug criminal.
Being a drug criminal prevents you from getting certain jobs, being denied further education, travel restrictions and being subject to stop and searches and vehicle checks more than your average spied on citizen. As if having a handicap in life was not hard enough, treating yourself and being self sufficient and less reliant on the NHS is obviously cause for more impediment to your existence.
Thank you Government, for allowing this pain, suffering, waste of resources and tax payers money to go on.