Tasmanian man found with cannabis handed suspended sentence

A northern Tasmanian man found with about 3 kilograms of cannabis has a suspended sentence hanging over his head.

Damien Charles Knowles was sentenced in the Launceston Magistrates Court on Tuesday after he was caught growing plants in his parents’ backyard.

The 45-year-old pleaded guilty to a number of drug related charges including possessing, cultivating and using a controlled plant.

But he argued a charge of trafficking, claiming the cannabis found was for personal use and told the court during a hearing that he used cannabis daily, before and after work.

Magistrate Simon Brown was not convinced and found Knowles guilty of trafficking.

Handing down his decision on Tuesday, Mr Brown said while Knowles admitted to being a “heavy user”, he had been found with a “very large amount of cannabis worth a very large amount of money”.

Knowles’ defence laywer Grant Tucker said the majority of the cannabis was used by his client personally and some was bartered with friends. 

Mr Tucker said there was “no evidence of any actual sales or attempts to sell”.

Knowles was convicted and sentenced to four months in prison, wholly suspended for three years.

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