An Australian woman and her husband stood in front of a judge in Perth last week and accepted an initial fine of $5,000 as punishment for distributing medical cannabis oil as a means to support her own medical marijuana needs.
According to the The Daily Mail, Selina Ursula Clarke, her husband Leighton, and their three small children watched with shock as police raided and searched their home. Inside, authorities found a small tent housing four pot plants, a wine fridge containing cannabis oil and capsules, and $2,900 in cash.
As court records detail, the Clarkes grew cannabis and produced marijuana oil to help Selina treat her chronic pain, and sold small amounts of leftover product to finance the cost of their hydroponic grow set up.
In court, the judge noted that the couple’s cannabis sales were not for commercial profit, but still insisted that the pot grow and production were illegal, ultimately settling on a monetary punishment.
“You made an error of judgement in painful and difficult circumstances,” Magistrate Brian Mahon told Clarke. “Whatever the pain is… the use of cannabis is unlawful.”
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Australia’s capital city of Canberra recently passed a recreational cannabis law that will allow for legal home grows, but in Perth, where the Clarkes live, cannabis is still fully criminalized. And if the couple is caught with cannabis again, Judge Mahon made it clear that the punishment would be even more harsh — no matter the severity of Mrs. Clarke’s condition.
“[The consequences] will have a very dramatic impact on your life and your family life,” the magistrate threatened.
Selina’s husband Leighton was also charged with the same crime of manufacturing and distributing cannabis, and will face his own court date later this month.
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