I do not for one minute believe that the Misuse of Drugs Act was meant to stop people from growing plants that ease suffering or improve health - and certainly as there was no victim to his so-called "offence" he does not deserve punishment.
NO, the court does not deserve the congratulations that one reader writes here. A "conditional discharge" for three years - that means that if he grows again and gets court, he may be punished more severely and even sent to prison.
AND if he resorts again to prescribed diamorphine, one thing is sure - he will become addicted to it.
It is time that the police and courts stopped using the law against people in dire need of the pain-relieving and other beneficial properties of this remarkable plant, cannabis.
Above in response to:
Man grew cannabis to ease his back pain: The Advertiser: August 9 2011 By Daniel Howlett
A MAN suffering from a degenerative spinal condition was spared jail yesterday for growing cannabis to relieve his pain.
Stephen Tull, 59, was given a three-year conditional discharge at Teesside Crown Court after he admitted growing cannabis plants.
Richard Wilson, prosecuting, said that on May 12, police went to search another property in the street in Darlington where Tull lived.
Mr Wilson said: “When they arrived, they found the defendant outside of his property.
He ushered them in, telling the officers that he knew why they were there.
“When officers went upstairs they found a relatively professional set-up with 24 cannabis plants growing. He immediately admitted being a user of the drug and told police that it helped with his condition.”
Tull appeared at Darlington Magistrates’ Court on July 5, but magistrates felt their sentencing powers were not sufficient and sent the case to crown court.
Brian Russell, in mitigation, said: “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 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.
“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.
Speaking outside the court, Tull, who lives in the South Park area of Darlington, said: “I would just like to thank everybody for their kind support throughout this process.
“Me and my partner are both just really glad this whole thing is over. We can now put it behind us and get on with our lives.
“The three-year conditional discharge was a little more than I was expecting, but I will be keeping my nose clean, so it does not really matter.”