A Frisian man who was convicted of growing marijuana in 2015 has been told he does not have to pay almost €500,000 to the Dutch state by appeal court judges in Leeuwarden.
The public prosecution department had gone to court to get the cash which it says Doede de Jong had earned from cultivating the soft drug.
But the court ruled that the department had failed to show how it had calculated such an amount and not taken into account the fact that De Jong used organic methods.
Nor had the department looked into De Jong’s private finances in an effort to determine how much he had personally gained by growing the drug, the court said in its ruling.
In 2015 De Jong was found guilty of cultivating marijuana but was not punished because, the court said, he had done all he could to ensure a safe, legal supply to licenced coffee shops.
‘There was no question of fire safety issues or electricity theft,’ the court said. Nor was De Jong involved with criminals who produce cannabis.
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