Man pleads guilty to €4 worth of cannabis

The man is a former heroin addict and is wary of using pain medication as it is 'of an opiate-based nature'
Man pleads guilty to €4 worth of cannabis

The man told gardaí he had a small amount of cannabis for personal use. Picture: Stock Image.

A man has pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis, after saying he uses it for longstanding pain, because, as a former heroin addict, he is wary of the medication he has been prescribed.

Paul Lee, of 18 the Heights, Dromleigh, in Co Cork, pleaded guilty to possession of €4 worth of cannabis and a grinder, when gardaí searched his apartment under warrant on June 19 last.

When he provided gardaí with the nominal amount of the drug, he said it was for his own use.

Mr Lee, 54, had six previous convictions, including five for possession of cannabis, the most recent dating from 2016.

His solicitor, Eamonn Fleming, said his client had four children, two of whom lived with him, and had recently become a grandfather.

The court heard Mr Lee, who has worked as a chef and gardener, suffers from osteoporosis and is awaiting an MRI scan.

Mr Lee said he had come to Ireland many years ago to escape a heroin addiction when he was younger.

Mr Fleming said that Mr Lee had been prescribed medication for the pain he was suffering, but that it was "of an opiate-based nature" and "he is afraid of that and so he doesn't take it".

Mr Fleming said his client would be happy to undertake community service work, if deemed suitable to do so.

Mr Lee said he was in a "Catch-22" situation and that he used CBD oils mainly, with "a small amount of illegal drugs".

Judge John King said: "I would not consider community service until I know he is clean."

Mr Lee said he would engage with that process with the Probation Service and the judge directed that a probation report be prepared for later in the year, to include two random urine-analysis tests.

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