Ten years in jail for man who grew 38 marijuana plants at home

The Emirati was convicted by the Dubai Criminal Court of growing and possessing the plants,and a total of 749 grams of the drug as well as 1,977 amphetamine tablets.

DUBAI// A man who learned how to grow 38 marijuana plants in his house online has been sentenced to 10 years in jail.

The Emirati was convicted by Dubai Criminal Court of growing and possessing the plants, and a total of 749 grams of the drug as well as 1,977 amphetamine tablets. An earlier charge of possessing the plants with the intention to sell was dropped.

The 46-year-old filled three rooms at his home with the plants and equipment and a ventilation system was installed to carry the smell outside.

The man, who holds two masters degrees from universities in the United States, admitted all of the charges and told judges the marijuana was for personal use.

He was arrested on March 11 this year while returning home from Al Ain.

An Emirati lieutenant with the anti-narcotics unit at Dubai Police said marijuana was found in the man’s car and, during questioning, admitted to growing marijuana at his villa in Al Ruwais in Abu Dhabi. He said he lived at his mother’s house in Sharjah.

“When we asked him how learnt to grow marijuana, he said he learnt through the internet and ordered most of the equipment needed from abroad,” said the officer.

Prosecutors said the plants seized weighed around 380kg, which the defendant’s lawyer disputed.

“This is not the weight of the marijuana itself, this includes soil, branches, leaves,” said lawyer Saeed Al Ghilani.

“My client studied in the USA where he started using marijuana and when he returned he held a good position but felt sorry for himself for having to go to addiction dens in order to get marijuana. I’m not trying to legalise drug consumption but I’m trying to explain my client’s circumstances,” said Mr Al Ghilani.

The Emirati was also fined Dh50,000.

salamir@thenational.ae

Published: September 6, 2016 04:00 AM

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