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a man suffering from a degenerative spinal condition was spared jail yesterday for growing cannabis to relieve his pain.
The man in question, was given a three-year conditional discharge at Teeside Crown Court after admitting to growing cannabis plants.
Police went to search another property in the street in Darlington where the man lived and when they arrived they found the man outside his property where he asked the officers to come in, and sent them upstairs to his set-up of 24 cannabis plants.
He immediately admitted being a user of the drug and told police that it helped with his chronic degenerative spinal pain. He appeared at Darlington Magistrates Court but magistrates felt their sentancing powers were not sufficient and sent the case to the crown court.
He was in receipt of around £800 per month in benefits and used to spend around £200 per month on marijuana, which he found to be a much more effective painkiller then the diamorphine he is prescribed. He then decided to save the money and spent around £1,500 setting up the cannabis farm, which he knew would save him money in the long term.
The court said, He will not be growing cannabis again, but I think it is clear from the pre-sentence report that he will continue to use it into the future.
Judge George Moorhouse said: You have pleaded guilty to a very serious charge. However, you are suffering from a degenerative spinal condition and, by taking cannabis, your position was made more comfortable.
He ordered that the cannabis and growing equipment be destroyed.