"I use cannabis for my emphysema. It helps me breath better."

That was Eric John Bariball's explanation to police after showing them where he was stashing two small containers holding cannabis leaf in his house.

Police officers visited his Whanganui East property at 9.17am on Tuesday, June 11 with a search warrant.

Bariball did not lead them on a wild goose chase, immediately showing the officers where his cannabis was, as well as several utensils used to consume it.


These included a glass bong, wooden pipe and butter knives used for spotting.

Bariball appeared in Whanganui District Court on Tuesday charged with procuring or possessing cannabis and possessing a pipe or utensils for cannabis.

Lawyer Anna Brosnahan said her client entered immediate guilty pleas.

"There is a reluctance to deal with the issue relating to cannabis use and that's relating to health reasons. He's got emphysema." Brosnahan said.

Emphysema is a lung condition in which the air sacs in the lungs (alveoli) are damaged, causing shortness of breath.

Brosnahan suggested that Judge Gerard Lynch order Bariball to come up if called upon for his offending, but Lynch said that would be a waste of ink.

Judge Lynch sentenced Bariball to six months' supervision.

"The law might not have quite reached the point where you want it to reach on cannabis," Judge Lynch said.


"As I said to your counsel, I don't imagine your GP is keen on you smoking cannabis when you've got emphysema."

The Judge also ordered destruction of the cannabis and utensils.