A Northland man who admitted growing cannabis for sale and for personal use to ease chronic pain was jailed when he appeared for sentencing in the High Court at Whangarei on Friday.
Stephen Moore, 47, of Whangarei, had earlier pleaded guilty in the Whangarei District Court to charges of cultivating cannabis, being in possession of cannabis plants for sale, unlawful possession of a pistol and unlawful possession of ammunition.
Police who searched Moore's rented property in February found 17 cannabis plants up to 1.7m tall growing under his house. Polythene bags, fertiliser and insecticide were also found.
A container holding 10g of cannabis, snaplock bags of the drug, an inoperable sawn-off shotgun and 20 rounds of ammunition were found in the house.
However, the judge acknowledged the gun was meant to be used for defence.
The court heard that Moore suffered from chronic pain and smoked up to six cannabis joints daily to alleviate it. He was trying to wean himself off the drug and wanted to be admitted to a residential rehabilitation facility.
Justice Lang told Moore he applauded his desire to rehabilitate himself. But he said "if steps are not taken to wean you off cannabis it's inevitable you will appear before the courts again."
Moore was sentenced to two years and three months in prison for being in possession of cannabis plants for sale.
He received a six-month prison sentence for possession of a firearm and ammunition, to be served concurrently.
Since Moore had already spent four months in custody, the judge said he would be eligible for parole in five months.
Moore had previously spent time in prison for cannabis-related offences and for the unlawful possession of a firearm.