A 54-year-old man has been put on probation for 18 months for possessing cannabis.

Paul Ian Berry was caught with 155.7 grams of the drug, which police valued at £2,848.

Scales and snap bags were also found at his home but Berry said that these were used for his Lego modelling hobby.

Prosecuting advocate Barry Swain told the court that police went to Berry’s home, at Saddle Road in Douglas, on November 15, at 9.40am.

A search of the premises found 18.6 grams of cannabis resin, which police valued at £106, and 137.1 grams of herbal cannabis, which they valued at £2,742.

Snap bags and scales were also found.

During an interview at police headquarters, Berry handed in a prepared statement, saying that he used different strains of the drug on different days, as it helped with anxiety, sleep, and boosting his energy levels.

Berry said he had bought it from a friend at £400 for an ounce, but that it would have lasted him until the new year.

He said that he bought the snap bags to hold Lego bricks for modelling projects and the scales to weigh the models, but admitted he had also used them to weigh personal amounts of cannabis.

A probation report said he had struggled with his mental health and finances were a big issue for him as he was concerned about his gas bills.

The report said that Berry had been using the drug quite heavily but there had been no evidence he had been passing it on to others.

His last conviction was in 1997.

A probation order was recommended, saying that this would help Berry reduce his cannabis use.

Defence advocate David Clegg said that his client was not a well man and that he lived alone with his cat.

Mr Clegg said that Berry was in arrears with his energy bills and said he was going to be cut off.

‘He has been too anxious to get in touch with them and tell them he’s been having difficulties,’ said the advocate.

‘The police raided his house because they believed he’d been involved in drug-dealing. They seized his £300 winter fuel allowance and he still hasn’t had it back.

‘That’s part of the reason he is in arrears. He could absolutely use some support in dealing with Manx Gas and Manx Utilities.

‘He has £40 per week to feed him and his cat, and having spoken to him, I strongly suspect the cat will come first.’

Magistrates chair Ken Faragher told Berry: ‘We note you had £2,800 worth of cannabis. That may indicate a lack of prioritising.’

No order for prosecution costs was made.