Man convicted after making cannabis oil to treat shoulder pain

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A Taranaki man turned his home into a pseudo-pharmacy when he started cooking up cannabis oil to use for his own pain relief.

Struggling with a shoulder injury, Christopher John Mckelvey found traditional pain medication was either not helping or giving him nasty side-effects.

When police searched his Bell Block home on the morning of September 28 and found cannabis plant material, isopropyl alcohol and oil made from the class C drug, he was upfront that it was for his personal use.

The summary of facts said officers found cannabis plant material in a black rubbish bag and five litres of isopropyl alcohol in Mckelvey’s garage.

Cannabis oil was found in four individual tabs of a blister pack, weighing a total of five grams.

“In the kitchen and washroom two stainless steel bowls were found with cannabis oil stuck to the sides,” the summary of facts said.

When asked, Mckelvey told police he made the oil between May and June 2017.

During Thursday’s hearing in the New Plymouth District Court, the 36-year-old pleaded guilty to a charge of producing cannabis oil.

Lawyer Turitea Bolstad said Mckelvey had a serious shoulder problem and was awaiting surgery.

“It has been a very painful injury for this man.”

Bolstad said the defendant found the prescribed medication had not been effective and had negative side effects for him, so this is why he had turned to using the cannabis oil.

She said Mckelvey had since sought help to address his illegal drug problem.

Judge Chris Sygrove convicted the defendant and ordered him to complete 150 hours of community work.

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