Man ‘grew cannabis plants at hostel’

Editorial Image.
Editorial Image.

A man who grew cannabis plants at a hostel where he was living was evicted from the building and then spat all around a police cell.

Artur Niemyjski (45), now with an address at Suffolk Street, Ballymena, was growing the plants at ‘The Lighthouse’ Hostel in the town’s Linenhall Street.

He appeared at Ballymena Magistrates Court on Thursday via video link from Maghaberry Jail, and admitted a charge of cultivating cannabis at the hostel three days earlier.

He also pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage to a police cell a Antrim PSNI Station. He had a record.

A prosecutor said the defendant was arrested for a separate matter and police were then tasked to the Lighthouse hostel where two cannabis plants in foil in a state of cultivation were found.

Credit cards not in the defendant’s name were also discovered and the defendant was evicted from the premises.

The prosecutor added that Niemyjski spat on the walls of a police cell and at a camera.

During a police interview he admitted cultivating the plants and spitting for which he wished to apologise and acknowledged what he did was wrong.

Defence barrister Michael Smith said the defendant had formerly worked in a factory but was depressed and was off sick and used cannabis. He said there had been a breakdown in a relationship with a partner.

Mr Smith said it was “strange” his client had been able to grow the cannabis plants at the hostel without being detected.

District Judge Peter King ordered the destruction of the cannabis plants and imposed a four months jail term, suspended for a year.