Ex swim star jailed for pot crop
GRANT William Morris went from being the second fastest swimmer in Australia when he was 16 to nurturing a $52,000 marijuana crop at 50.
Now he will spend at least the next 18 months in jail.
Morris pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court in Rockhampton yesterday to three charges after he was found tending to a “farm-type production” of 26 cannabis plants, with a combined weight of about 25kg.
The crop was discovered by police on September 2 last year at Corio Bay, about 40 minutes from the Yeppoon CBD.
Morris initially told police that the plants were for his own use, a fact that was disputed by Crown prosecutor Joshua Phillips who said no smoking paraphernalia was found in the area.
Defence Barrister Jeff Clarke said Morris had been a promising swimmer as a junior – the second fastest in Australia at 16 years of age.
He said he started using cannabis when aged about 17 and had battled addiction for more than 30 years.
Mr Clarke said Morris was undergoing tests after showing signs that he might be suffering from chronic renal failure, for which he might need ongoing treatment.
Justice Duncan McMeekin said he could not judge whether Morris was remorseful or not, despite Mr Clarke suggesting that he had co-operated with police.
“You didn’t particularly assist police; you were caught red-handed really,” Justice McMeekin said.
Justice McMeekin sentenced Morris to four years jail with a parole eligibility date of October 19, 2012.