FILE PHOTO: A Gunalda man has copped a huge fine for possessing 63 marijuana plants and more than 200g of the drug in his house.
FILE PHOTO: A Gunalda man has copped a huge fine for possessing 63 marijuana plants and more than 200g of the drug in his house.

63 marijuana plants only for personal use, Gympie court hears

A 48-YEAR-OLD Gunalda man busted growing 63 marijuana plants and possessing more than 200g of the same drug in his house has been handed a huge fine in court.

Andrew William Hogg admitted the plants were his when police searched his house on September 17, but told officers he was unaware he had so many, the Gympie Magistrates Court heard yesterday.

The September 17 search warrant turned up 42 of the plants in pots in his garden, as well as five growing under lights inside the house and yet another 16 growing under lights in his shed.

Police found another 185g of marijuana drying on Hogg’s table, and 28g packaged up in clip seal bags in his lounge room.

Hogg admitted all the drugs were his but specified they were for his personal use, the court heard.

Hogg pleaded guilty to one charge each of producing dangerous drugs, possessing dangerous drugs, possessing items used in connection with producing drugs and possessing eight rounds of ammunition.

Solicitor Chris Anderson told the court Hogg had kept the bullets “for sentimental reasons” and had no firearms to use them with.

Mr Anderson said his client had “no commercial intent” from possessing the marijuana, and he recognised the offences were “not to be trifled with”.

Magistrate Chris Callaghan noted the prosecution was not alleging Hogg had any commercial interest from the drug in sentencing him purely on the basis that it was for personal use “however suspicious it looks”.

Mr Callaghan noted three previous production charges in Hogg’s criminal history, including growing 39 plants in a past offence in December, 2017.

He fined Hogg $2000 and recorded convictions against him, with all items seized and handed over to police.