A man intercepted with an Esky full of cannabis and books on how to grow it has been bailed.
The Ballarat Magistrates' Court heard Peter Hickson, 54, was spotted by police driving close behind another car in Delacombe on Friday evening.
After the car in front slowed to turn off the Glenelg Highway, Hickson braked heavily and swerved to avoid a collision, which prompted police to turn their lights on.
After intercepting him, police noticed a strong smell of cannabis in the car, and upon seeing his prior convictions, asked to search it.
They found a small bag of cannabis and a bowl on the passenger seat.
A further search revealed three large bags of cannabis in an Esky in the back seat, $455 cash in Hickson's pocket, and eight small cannabis plants in the back of the car.
Police also found plant growing solutions and nutrients in the back of the car, and "reading materials on how to grow plants", according to the summary.
Following a police interview, a search warrant was executed at Hickson's house in Warrnambool.
Police found the 18-year-old son of the accused, who has been released pending summons, at the house.
Inside, there was a grow tent with three large cannabis plans and one already cut, a "substantial" amount of harvested cannabis, a second empty grow tent, light bulbs for plants, and five slingshots.
The court was told Hickson had a significant criminal history with several related convictions, and had a quarter-ounce daily habit.
His lawyer disputed the trafficking charge, and said he had a history of self-medication following an abusive childhood, witnessing traumatic events as an adult, and dealing with a broken neck from a car accident.
"He shows compelling reasons because the trafficking case is weak, he has no priors since 2013, and his priors only show possession, use, and cultivation - not trafficking," she said.
Magistrate Ron Saines said the trafficking case was "unsupported by evidence of scales, tick lists, mobile phone (data), or admissions".
"But, the possession of three (bags) in the back of his car is significant evidence of it being in his possession for sale," he added.
"If this man is refused bail, it is likely he will serve three to four months in custody before the case is finalised, and there is a risk he may serve longer on remand than for a sentence - in my mind, that presents a considerable injustice."
Hickson was granted conditional bail under a $1000 surety, and returns to the Ballarat Magistrates' Court in October.
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