Father tries to take blame for daughter’s cannabis plants
A Northern Rivers father who tried to take the fall for cultivating his daughter's cannabis plants has been convicted.
Gregory Neil Stewart, 57, pleaded guilty to possessing 23 cannabis plants in the Casino Local Court on Thursday.
The NSW Police prosecutor withdrew one count of cultivating a prohibited drug, after it was accepted the plants were grown by Stewart's daughter, Cody Louise Fuller.
Fuller, who also appeared before Casino Local Court on Thursday, pleaded guilty to cultivating and possessing the 23 cannabis plants, which were ranging in heights of 80-90cm.
The court heard Fuller had contacted police after her father had been charged explaining the plants were hers and she had been the one responsible for growing them on her father's property.
Representing the duo, solicitor Vince Boss said when the police had turned up to the property, Stewart had "tried to cover for his daughter and take the blame for the plants" in order to protect the mother-of-two.
"He tried to take the pressure off her," Mr Boss said.
"He had told her to get rid of the plants, to pull them out and she hasn't done that.
"Obviously the better choice was to pull the plants out himself."
Mr Boss despite Stewart having previously served out his sentence for a separate supplying cannabis charge, he should be given some form of leniency in sentencing.
Magistrate Kathy Crittenden said Stewart "of all people" knew there were "significant penalties" for cannabis offences.
"It's illegal in this state and you put yourself in great risk," she said.
"But it's a little unusual that your daughter accepted responsibility."
Stewart was convicted sentenced to a 12-month community corrections order, while his daughter Fuller was given a 12-month conditional release order without conviction.