View Full Version : Cannabis cultivation was for landlord's cancer

20-Apr-15, 07:57
Smell of drug on pupils' clothes gave the game away

A STRANGE smell on pupils' uniform sparked a police investigation in a Caithness village, Wick Sheriff Court has been told..
For the odour was identified at their school as cannabis and it led police to a rural house in Caithness and a small factory operation.
The smell of the Class B drug being produced at Reisgill House, near Lybster, was absorbed by the school clothes worn by Aaron Faulkner's children.
Faulkner, 33, escaped a prison sentence, after the prosecution conceded that the cultivation at Reisgill House, near the village, was not a commercial enterprise.
He had produced the Class B drug to provide cannabis oil for his landlord to ease the pain of his advanced cancer even though the crop had a potential street value of 20,000.
It was Sheriff Andrew Berry, who revealed how the kids had unwittingly put the police on the track of the mini-factory, as he perused a background report on the accused. The sheriff indicated that the discovery might have additional implications for Faulkner with other agencies.
Faulkner admitted on indictment producing the drug between January and April last year. In addition to plants at various stages, numbering between 150-200 plants, the police found all the equipment required for the production of the drug, in two rooms including electronic and lighting, installed by Faulkner, using his skills as an electrician.
Solicitor George Mathers said that the accused had come north from East Staffordshire with his family. They had taken a decision to flit north, to get "the fresh air of Scotland". His landlord had purchased Reisghill House and came to an arrangement whereby the accused and his family would live there rent free and in return, would produce the cannabis oil which he had found beneficial to his condition.
Mr Mathers stressed that there was no question of production for gain. He had "simply been doing his friend a favour".
Sentencing Faulkner, Sheriff Berry said that there had been a considerable concession made by the Crown in relation to Faulkner's involvement with the crime.
However the sheriff added: " Producing any sort of drug is treated very seriously by the courts. However, I have to take into account the facts and circumstances as they are presented to me and put to one side any doubts or suspicions I may have had. But, for you to leave England and move your entire family to reside in accommodation free-of-charge, where you produced a substantial amount of cannabis, is, to the least suspicious, or inappropriate behaviour. "
The sheriff said he had seriously considered a custodial sentence but was "only just persuaded against that course of action.
Faulkner, was ordered to carry out 225 hours of unpaid work in the community. He and his family had returned south following the offence and were said, now, to be living in Burton-on-Trent.
The equipment involved in the cannabis cultivation was ordered to be forfeit.