Limerick man planned to barter Cannabis for timber and coal

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

A MAN who was caught growing cannabis at his home on the outskirts of the city intended to barter the drugs for coal and timber, a court has heard.

A MAN who was caught growing cannabis at his home on the outskirts of the city intended to barter the drugs for coal and timber, a court has heard.

Ray O’Doherty, 38, of The Cottage, Knockananty, Ballysimon pleaded guilty to cultivating the drugs on January 6, 2011.

The father-of-two also pleaded guilty to possession of the drugs for the purpose of sale or supply on the same date.

Sgt Donal Cronin said the plants were seized when gardai conducted a search of the defendant’s home.

He said 12 cannabis plants - at various stages of growth - were recovered in a shed along with various apparatus which is used in the cultivation of cannabis.

Limerick Court was told the total value of the drugs seized at the house was €4,800.

Solicitor Darach McCarthy said his client had “not actually sold or supplied” any of the drugs.

However, he said his client had intended “bartering” some of the cannabis for blocks of wood and coal.

Mr McCarthy said O’Doherty, who suffers from depression, had intended using the remainder of the drugs himself.

Judge Eugene O’Kelly was told the defendant, who is unemployed is hoping to start a FAS course in the coming months.

“This has been a significant wake-up call,” said Mr McCarthy who added that his client had fully co-operated with gardai following his arrest.

Imposing sentence, Judge O’Kelly commented that the drugs would have “turned out to be a fine crop” if not detected by gardai.

The judge also questioned the delay in bringing the case before the courts saying O’Doherty had been left with the matter “hanging over his head” for 18 months

He fined the defendant €350 for cultivating cannabis without a licence and he fined him an additional €75 for possession of the drugs on the same date.