TWO “crop sitters” have avoided immediate jail despite being caught tending a “large commercial style hydroponics” set-up, and having more than $1500 cash each.
Wolfgang Dragert, 58, and Charles King, 64, appeared together in Ballarat Magistrates Court yesterday.
Both men pleaded guilty to cultivating cannabis and dealing property suspected to be the proceeds of crime, while Dragert also pleaded guilty to theft of electricity.
The court heard police found almost 20 kilograms of cannabis and 46 cannabis plants when they
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Steve Kent said police discovered the two-car garage at the property had been split into two rooms, with 10-centimetre-high seedlings on one side and five “very large” mature cannabis plants on the other.
Police found a further 25 cannabis plants in the bathroom under lights, and in a blacked-out drying room.
In an adjoining garage seven black plastic bags containing more than 16 kilograms of cannabis leaf were found.
Senior Constable Kent described the men as “crop sitters” with limited involvement in sale of the drugs.
“However we would say they are more than an integral part of the cycle,” he said. “They provide anonymity to the principles.”
Magistrate Kay Robertson sentenced both men to nine months in prison, suspended for two years.