Sarina man fined for using pot for pain management
A SARINA man's choice of medication - marijuana - has come under fire by a judge who reminded him the drug is in fact still illegal.
Magistrate Damien Dwyer took on board Craig Stuart Robinson had been growing marijuana for personal use, to manage pain from a knee injury and stomach condition.
But he suggested the 48-year-old rely on his doctor's treatment, rather than self-administer.
Robinson faced court on Monday, assisted by a walking stick and represented by duty solicitor Danny Yarrow, pleading guilty to producing marijuana and possessing marijuana on July 2.
He also pleaded guilty to contravening a police requirement to show his ID on July 2.
Entering his pleas for possession and production, Robinson added there was extenuating circumstances.
But Mr Dwyer said a guilty plea is just that and asked Robinson to let his lawyer handle proceedings, or simply "sack him".
"The way we work here, Mr Robinson, is we don't have two mouthpieces. I don't listen to two voices," he said.
Robinson's criminal and traffic history was not detailed vocally, but Mr Dwyer did note it was quite lengthy.
Prosecutor Senior Constable Duncan Erskine said on July 4 police knocked on the door of Robinson's Sarina home.
He took police to his backyard where a 50cm plant was found, as well as nine seedlings underneath the house.
A small amount of marijuana was later found in a drawer in Robinson's home.
Mr Erskine said Robinson informed police he had been using the marijuana as a pain management aid.
Adding to that point, Mr Yarrow said Robinson had struggled with side effects of traditional pharmaceuticals and found marijuana more effective.
" ... he has raised this with his doctor and his doctor has advised there are no other alternatives available to him, medication wise, that might have the same effects ... he took matters into his own hands, Your Honour," he said.
Mr Dwyer said he took into account the submission, but added "while the law is the way it is, Mr Robinson, we're going to enforce it".
"If I was you I'd rely on your doctor's medical degree, rather than your own (treatment)," he said.
Robinson was fined $1400. A conviction was not recorded.