Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Dope Growers Dodge Jail

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Dope Growers Dodge Jail

Article excerpt

Ross Irby

ross.irby@dailymercury.com.au

TWO Whitsunday tourism workers have received suspended jail sentences after being caught growing cannabis that police claim had a street value in excess of $100,000.

Steven Richards, 39, and Gerard Van Ansem, 26, both of Strathdickie near Proserpine, were convicted and sentenced in the District Court in Mackay after pleading guilty to unlawfully producing cannabis and possession of cannabis between December 1, 2012 and July 3, 2013.

Judge Hugh Botting sentenced both men to 18 months jail, immediately suspended, and placed them on conditional parole not to reoffend in that time.

Richards and Van Ansem also pleaded guilty under the Drugs Misuse Act to possession of hydroponic equipment, lighting, chemicals, fertiliser and fans used in drug production. Richards pleaded guilty to possession of two electronic scales, a grinder, a mobile phone used in the offences and having $1595 cash that was the proceeds of crime. …

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