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Last Updated: Friday, 8 February 2008, 12:16 GMT
Mercy for 'genital itch' drug man
Cannabis (generic)
Spalding found that only cannabis eased the pain
A man who grew cannabis to combat the pain of a genital itch has been shown mercy by a sheriff.

Gregor Spalding was fined 300 after telling Perth Sheriff Court the irritation had lasted three years.

The 31-year-old had tried a variety of prescribed medicines but said they did not ease the ache as well as the drug.

He decided to grow his own, but his small crop of plants was discovered by accident when police entered his home while searching for his neighbour.

The officers found seven young plants with a potential street value of 660 at the property in Blairgowrie.

The court was previously told that Spalding had never been in trouble before and simply wanted to grow his own instead of using drug dealers to buy cannabis.

He admitted producing cannabis at his home in Perthshire on 15 April last year.

In a letter to court, his doctor said: "He has a fixed belief that he has an underlying condition which has not been diagnosed. I can confirm he has had a chronic pain problem since 2004.

He realises this perhaps wasn't the cleverest thing to do, but in his eyes it was worth a try
Mike Tavendale

"It is quite reasonable that he thought cannabis might help his condition as there have been reports in the press of cannabis relieving pain in multiple sclerosis and other conditions."

Solicitor Mike Tavendale said: "It is certainly not a case of taking it for enjoyment. He has had a chronic pain problem for three years.

"Out of desperation he resolved to try cannabis after reading about the lady in Orkney who had been producing it for herself.

"He obtained seeds and bought a lamp. He had not been growing it long. They were about a foot high.

"He realises this perhaps wasn't the cleverest thing to do, but in his eyes it was worth a try."

Man grew cannabis to combat itch
10 Aug 07 |  Tayside and Central

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