Growing cannabis for own use

A PORTLAOISE man who was found with eight cannabis plants at the seedling stage of development at his home was fined last week at the District Court.

A PORTLAOISE man who was found with eight cannabis plants at the seedling stage of development at his home was fined last week at the District Court.

Karl Byrne, 18 De Vesci Court, Fairgreen, Portlaoise, admitted cultivating the drug for his own use, when gardaí discovered the plants at his home on September 30 last year. Inspector Michael Walsh told the court that the plants were only seedlings and he estimated the value at €30. A small quantity of cannabis valued at €50 was also discovered.

Byrne has three previous convictions.

Defence, Mr Philip Meagher said his client was a home owner who had fallen into serious arrears and become extremely distressed.

“But rather than turn to his family or GP, he used cannabis,” Mr Meagher said, adding that the plants were for Byrne’s own use and he had not been making any profit from them. Mr Meagher said Byrne has put matters in hand and he now attends four separate engagements each week to deal with his addiction.

“He assures the court these days are behind him,” Mr Meagher said.

Byrne was fined €200.