'Elaborate' drug crop found in farmer's vegie patch
A FARMER has copped a hefty fine for growing an "elaborate" drug crop in his vegetable garden, but it turns out he wasn't the only one to blame.
On March 28, police searched a Murgon farm where Benjamin Bradley was living, and found five mature marijuana plants in a vegetable garden, growing amongst the corn.
Police prosecutor Barry Stevens said an elaborate irrigation system had been set up.
Officers also found nine mature plants hanging and drying in a shed on a property.
"When asked about it, the defendant said, 'You need to talk to my friend about this'."
Sgt Stevens said the five marijuana plants in the vegetable patch weighed 6.69kg and the marijuana in the shed weighed 9.55kg.
Defence lawyer Mark Werner said there was a co-offender involved in the matter, who was the main offender.
"There's a paddock next to the house paddock that has a vegetable garden and irrigating system that Mr Bradley's father installed many years ago," Mr Werner said.
"That was taken over by the main offender.
"She was a friend who was staying there but she no longer resides at the house."
Mr Werner said his client didn't know what was going on.
"He had seen her smoke marijuana so he did suspect that she might be growing some plants, but it's a large property so this is more like wilful blindness," he said.
"She made full admissions to the police that it was really all her doing, and he had no part in the production.
"Therefore we're asking no conviction be recorded as his youngest is four years old and entering Prep next year so he'll be looking for employment and that would be difficult with a conviction recorded."
Magistrate Louisa Pink said 16kg was a significant amount of marijuana.
"The prosecution accepts that you were not the main offender, it seems your housemate cultivated it," Ms Pink said.
"You are guilty by wilful blindness."
Ms Pink fined Bradley $1000 for the two charges of producing dangerous drugs and possessing dangerous drugs.
A conviction was not recorded.