Joanna Mary McNeill
Prosecuted in Operation Lime
Alleged cannabis gardeners' shop to record customers
Staff at a Christchurch gardening supply shop will have to keep a register of customers who buy specified gardening gear, under the terms of their release on bail at a court appearance today.
Company director Joanna Mary McNeill, 36, and sales assistant Michael Dennis Ross, 31, were both granted bail on remand to May 12 at an appearance before Judge Patricia Costigan in the Christchurch District Court today.
Both were arrested as part of the Operation Lime swoop by the police on homes and business premises around the country yesterday, to stop cannabis cultivation ventures and the sale of growing equipment.
The court was told the pair were staff at Peat and Garden Supplies in Fitzgerald Avenue, Christchurch.
Police prosecutor Constable Michael Tualii said the police sought bail conditions that the pair live at specified addresses, not sell objectionable publications, not have possession of controlled drugs, and keep a register of people who buy items on a list supplied by the police. The register may be inspected by the police.
McNeill was also required to surrender her passport, which had already been taken by the police during yesterday’s searches.
She was remanded without plea on charges of supplying seven High Times magazines about cannabis cultivation and two DVDs, supplying three bottles of nutrients, lighting, and hydroponic equipment, cultivating cannabis, selling cannabis, and possession of cannabis for supply. She faces 16 charges.
Ross faces 10 charges: supplying the magazines and DVDs, selling cannabis, cultivating cannabis, possession of cannabis for supply, and supplying various pieces of growing equipment and nutrients.
A third person was to appear on related charges of cultivating and possessing cannabis for supply later in the day.
Two other people were granted registrar’s remands on cannabis charges relating to the same date as the police swoops, but it was not known whether they were arrested as part of Operation Lime. They were remanded to the same date.
Defence counsel for McNeill and Ross, Jonathan Eaton, said other people arrested were to appear in court later in the week.