A 66-year-old man was sentenced to pay the court $800 after he was caught with 19 grams of marijuana and 40 cannabis seedlings.

Richard Bruno of Portsmouth appeared before Magistrate Ozzie Lewis at the Roseau Magistrate Court yesterday.

Bruno pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis, cultivation of cannabis and possession of cannabis with intent to supply.

According to the facts of the case, on May 11 police decided to search the home of Bruno while on mobile patrol in the Cotton Hill area. They met Bruno in his yard and informed him that they were interested in performing a search on his premises. They proceeded to do so where they reportedly found 40 seedlings growing in a container on the fridge and 39 grams of cannabis on a toolbox in his living room.

When ask by Magistrate Lewis to make a plea of leniency on his behalf, the defendant, who is a carpenter by profession, told the court, “I am a law abiding citizen of this country. I have five children. It was for my consumption and not for me to sell. I use it for me to make tea.”

The defendant also admitted that he had been using the substance since 1965.

“You are an early pioneer of marijuana, one of the first users in Portsmouth and you have been able to stay away from police for all these years,” Magistrate Lewis told the defendant during the proceedings.