Former soldier set up cannabis farm in Grangemouth

The smell of cannabis coming from a property in Grangemouth led police to the door of an army veteran who had cultivated over 30 plants to harvest the drug.

Tuesday, 9th March 2021, 12:30 pm

Appearing at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday, John Hoey (64) had pleaded guilty to producing the class B drug at his 154 Almond Street, Grangemouth home on December 17, 2019.

Heather Galbraith, procurator fiscal depute, said: “Police received intelligence about a strong smell of cannabis coming from the address. Officers attended and were offered access by the accused.

"They asked him about the smell and he said he was a cannabis user and had recently smoked a joint. He then told police he did have a cannabis cultivation within the address.

Former soldier Hoey had cultivated 31 cannabis plants at his house

"There were 31 cannabis plants. He told police ‘I only grow these for my own use as I have PTSD from the army’.”

The court heard Hoey had served in the Army for nine years and had spent time in Northern Ireland where he saw “terrible things”.

It was stated he uses cannabis to self medicate.

Defence solicitor Simon Hutchison said: “He grows it in one lot at once so hopefully not annoying his neighbours with regular small grows.

"He grew all these plants at once to try to stop the neighbours finding out as well.”

Sheriff Derek Livingston said it was a “substantial amount” of cannabis but believed it was for Hoey’s own use.

He fined Hoey £840 to be paid back at a rate of £100 per month.

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