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Widower had cannabis hidden in chicken coop

A WIDOWER who stored cannabis in a chicken coop in a back garden developed an addiction to the drug after his wife died from cancer, a court heard.

Anthony Lee (57) got into money troubles due to his addiction and he was asked to hold the drug at the behest of others.

Judge David McHugh imposed a four-month sentence but suspended it for one year.

The defendant, of Casement Drive in Finglas, admitted before Blanchardstown District Court to possession of cannabis as well as having the drug for sale or supply.

Sergeant Mary Doherty said gardai obtained a warrant and searched a house at Casement Drive on April 5 last.

During the course of the search, a quantity of cannabis was found in a chicken coop in the back garden of the house. The street value of the drug was €2,250.

Sgt Doherty said Lee, who has no previous convictions, was later arrested by gardai and made full admissions.

Defence solicitor Kelly Breen said Lee's wife died in 2005 from cancer. He had nursed her during her illness.

What started as a casual use of the drug when his wife was ill developed into a heavy addiction after her death, said Ms Breen.

She said Lee was using a lot of cannabis, got into money troubles and was asked to hold the drug.

The court heard Lee, a taxi driver, is in a new relationship, has cut back on his cannabis use and is no longer beholden to anyone.