A CASE in which a 21-year-old cultivated cannabis in 2015 was recently finalised at Skibbereen District Court.
The date of two offences – relating to the cultivation of cannabis and having cannabis herb for the purpose of sale or supply – was December 7th 2015.
Judge Mary Dorgan noted that the case against Luke Cregan of Church Cross, Skibbereen, had been adjourned by Judge James McNulty to see how the accused would behave himself in the meantime.
Judge McNulty had indicated to the accused, and the accused’s solicitor, Colette McCarthy, that he would be lenient if Luke Cregan managed to turn his life around.
After reading a favourable probation report, and considering the clear results of random uranalysis tests, Judge Mary Dorgan dealt with both charges by way of fines.
Judge Dorgan said she was mindful of the fact that the amount of cannabis found during the search at the accused’s home was significant.
Insp Fergal Foley told the court that gardaí had seized 9oz of cultivated and harvested grass, worth an estimated €5,000, plus two cannabis plants, valued at €1,600, and she fined him €500 on the cultivation charge.
On the second charge – a Section 15 charge under the Misuse of Drugs Act of having cannabis herb for the purpose of sale or supply – Judge Dorgan fined the accused €750.
The judge said she was taking into consideration the fact that the accused has no previous convictions, had engaged with the probation service, and had expressed regret about growing cannabis.
Judge Dorgan noted that the accused had agreed to submit to random urinalysis testing, and had worked with an addiction counsellor.
In mitigation, Colette McCarthy, solicitor, said her client had experienced some personal difficulties a few years ago and was unemployed at the time. But since his brush with the law, she said he had worked on himself, and is now in full-time employment.
Insp Fergal Foley also spoke in mitigation saying that Luke Cregan, who is now 23, has not come to the attention of the gardaí.
The inspector accepted Ms McCarthy’s submission that the accused had not technically sold or supplied cannabis, but did admit sharing the cannabis he grew with friends.
Judge Dorgan noted that the case had been before the court on three separate dates and she said the time had come to finalise matters.
The judge said she would deal with the case by way of fines on the basis that she was ‘dealing with someone who has been co-operative.’