A MAN who was found to be producing cannabis for self-medication at a house in Helensburgh has been spared a prison sentence.

Martin Gilroy was discovered to be in possession of the drug at his former home in Old Luss Road last year.

Following a police search of the address on April 20, 2018, a number of seeds, plants, lights, extractor vents and capsules were also discovered by officers.

Gilroy appeared at Dumbarton Sheriff Court on Friday, October 25, having pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to two charges: one of production of a controlled drug, namely cannabis, and another of possession of a controlled drug, Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the main psychoactive ingredient of cannabis.

The court heard that Gilroy, 26, was at home with his partner and their eight-month-old son when police attended to search the property.

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After gaining entry via an unlocked door, The search of the house resulted in the discovery of a bag of 55 clear capsules, a vial containing seeds, plant pots, blue lights and three grow tents.

The plants were said to be at various stages of growth, while extractor vents were also found within the property.

After being arrested and questioned by police, Gilroy admitted the items belonged to him and had nothing to do with his partner.

He told officers: “It’s my cultivation, all mine. I was using the cupboard to make capsules that I medicate with.”

The court heard that the capsules were unlikely to be sold on and were for personal consumption only.

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Defence solicitor Philip Lafferty said: “From my dealings with him [Gilroy] he has always understood that this is a serious matter, but there were mitigating factors.

“There is no suggestion that the activity was for anything other than personal use, and there is an explanation in that Mr Gilroy suffered from back pain since a road traffic accident and prescribed medication did not agree with him.

“This was an effort to relieve his pain, in an unconventional but unsuccessful way.”

When asked to consider a community payback order as opposed to a prison term, Sheriff William Gallacher replied: “Is the court simply bound to pass sentences to persistent offenders as an alternative to custody every time? Is there a line to be drawn or just never?”

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Mr Lafferty said: “The reason for the offence was entirely selfish. There is no suggestion of any member of the public being involved in this.

“This was an effort in self-medication after a road accident in which he was knocked down and suffered back pain.

“This was a self-contained offence within the household.”

Passing sentence, Sheriff Gallacher said: “I think you have pushed the boundaries of the court almost to the brink.

“In all of these circumstances I just find a way of avoiding sending you to custody.”

Gilroy, who now lives in Graham Avenue in Clydebank, was given a community payback order and must carry out 213 hours of unpaid work within the next six months.

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