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Cancer drove Beaconsfield man to use pot for pain relief

Medicinal marijuana is legally available in Queensland, but its use must be prescribed and approved by medical professionals. A BEACONSFIELD man busted by police with a bag of marijuana told a court he was using the drug for pain relief following surgery for prostate cancer. While medicinal marijuana was legally approved for use in Queensland earlier this year, it must be prescribed and approved by medical professionals. John Barrington Parry, 71, faced Mackay Magistrates Court on December 12, and pleaded guilty to possessing 13 grams of marijuana on November 29 at Andergrove. He admitted to police that he was carrying the bag during a traffic stop, prosecutor Shelby Larcombe told Magistrate Damien Dwyer. Ms Larcombe said the contents were identified as "green leafy material”, weighing "approximately 13g”. Defence solicitor Cathy Cover, of McKays Solicitors, submitted Parry, a retired meatworks employee and married father of two, should undertake drug diversion. Drug diversion provides offenders access to health interventions to address substance use. Ms Cover added Parry had self-medicated with marijuana. "Approximately five years ago he was diagnosed with prostate cancer and he's had ongoing health difficulties and complications as a result of that surgery,” she said. "He started using cannabis for pain relief during that time. He is recently in remission and his drug offending is only after the period of the diagnosis of cancer. "He does have a limited (criminal) history.” Mr Dwyer took into account an early plea and Parry's co-operation with police. Parry was sentenced to drug diversion and ordered to pay $450 recognisance if he's not of good behaviour for four months. Originally published here:

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