M'boro man grows weed 'to help his headaches'

A MARYBOROUGH man in his late 50s told a court he was growing marijuana to help his body and headaches.

Neville James Christoffel appeared in Maryborough Magistrates Court on Tuesday and pleaded guilty to five charges including possessing and producing a dangerous drug.

Police Prosecutor Kathryne Stagoll told the court the 58-year-old man's hydroponic set up and marijuana was found when police searched his property.

"[The charges] resulted from a search warrant executed, police located an interior cannabis set up at the rear-end of the garage… [the officers] located an amount of cannabis, 374g and 13g of seeds," Sgt Stagoll said.

"The set up included lamps, lights… The defendant said he had been growing cannabis for two years for personal use, and that particular plant grown for five months."

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Sgt Stagoll said Christoffel's criminal history was "very short", and prosecution was seeking to have a conviction recorded "in relation to the nature of the set up".

Christoffel's defence lawyer Natasha Schumacher said her client was growing marijuana to personally use for pain relief.

"He had to stop working because of pain caused by bricklaying since he was 15. He was employed until he had to stop," Ms Schumacher said.

"[Christoffel] was diagnosed with calcification that caused body and headaches. He instructs me the cannabis helped these pains."

Ms Schumacher said her client had no criminal history since the 1980s and had entered a "very early" plea of guilty.

Magistrate Ross Woodford imposed a fine for all charges of $1200 which was referred to SPER.

The property was seized and a conviction was recorded.



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