A Gore man who grew commercial amounts of cannabis did it to pay for surgery.
When police raided the property where them an lived part-time they found mature and juvenile cannabis plants, and dry cannabis leaf, with an estimated sale value of $87,500.
Martyn James Geerling's lawyer Angela Neugebauer told Judge John Brandts-Giesen, in the Gore District Court on Wednesday, that some of the cannabis was grown for sale to pay for a surgery which was not publicly available, while some was used for pain relief for medical issues.
Geerling, 51, had to sit in the dock due to his medical issues while he was sentenced for cultivating cannabis.
The court was told police raided the property where Geerling lived on May 25.
In one room, which was lined with polythene sheets, 43 mature cannabis plants were growing under heat lamps.
In another room police found 37 juvenile plants and eight ounces of dried cannabis leaf were also found at the property.
Neugebauer said while Geerling was involved in the growing of the cannabis, he was not selling it.
Neugebauer said Geerling was embarrassed and ashamed at his involvement and felt he had let his parents and adult children down.
At the age of 51 he had never been in court before and until his involvement in this incident he had always been against drugs, she said.
Judge Brandts-Giesen said the growing operation was a professional one and each plant had the potential to provide significant value.
"You were unemployed and had the incentive. Quite clearly you were simply there producing cannabis for supply, there's no beating around the bush about that."
He sentenced him to 10 months' home detention.
"By the skin of your teeth you have avoided a sentence of imprisonment. This is a mark against you forever," Judge Brandts-Giesen said.