More than 130 marijuana plants found on couple’s farm
A MOUNT Ossa couple has been placed on a good behaviour bond after the discovery of 139 marijuana plants on their property.
Married couple Kim Barbara Walters, 56, and Thomas Davis Walters, 68, were subject to a search warrant on their former fruit and cattle property on August 11, 2019, where police found a total of 31.76kg of marijuana and a sophisticated set-up.
Officers found a small amount of marijuana in a van, 13 small plants and one mature plant on a plot (with a total wet weight of 2.06kg) and, with the use of a drone, found 125 plants ranging from seedlings to mature plants in the bush (weighing 29.7kg).
Both pleaded guilty to aggravated possession, producing dangerous drugs and possessing things used in commission of crime.
Thomas Walters' defence barrister Scott Malcolmson told Mackay District Court his client had "gone cold turkey" from the drug and had no intention of returning to drug use.
Mr Malcolmson said his client had previously worked as a boilermaker before working cattle and selling fruit from the couple's property.
Cyclone Debbie in 2017 had caused heavy damage to their property and they had been forced to cease their agricultural business, he said.
Kim Walters' defence solicitor Antoinette Morton said at that time the couples' social scene had become smaller as had their finances.
"During that period, they smoked up to two to three ounces," she said.
Judge Paul Smith said the couple had told police that they were heavy users and cared for the plants.
"There are early pleas here and neither of you had any previous convictions, there was no commercial purpose," he said.
"On the other hand, as you know, cannabis is illegal and there was significant amount of plants and a level of sophistication."
They each received a suspended total of 11 months jail, with a 12-month good behaviour bond hanging over their heads.