Cannabis oil advocate Jenny Hallam spared conviction for supplying medicinal cannabis
A South Australian cannabis oil distributor has been spared a conviction for providing the drug to terminally ill people, with the judge saying her actions helped rather than harmed the recipients.
Jenny Lee Hallam, 47, pleaded guilty to possessing and manufacturing a controlled drug in February.
Her property, north of Adelaide, was raided in January 2017 and police found a number of packaged cannabis oil products in syringes and capsules.
Judge Rauf Soulio today released Ms Hallam on a good behaviour bond in Adelaide's District Court.
He said it was clear Ms Hallam had been making the oil at a financial loss and her actions were not commercially motivated.
He said there was no evidence any harm had been caused to any recipient of the cannabis oil and that the evidence was "strongly to the contrary".
If convicted of manufacturing a controlled drug, Ms Hallam faced a maximum jail sentence of seven years, a $35,000 fine, or both.
In January, Ms Hallam addressed the media with supporters by her side, urging the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to drop the charges.
She said her actions were "morally right" and she was not a criminal.
"It was a medical necessity — the people were in need. Those people would have died if I hadn't of provided that treatment," she said.
"There are no victims in this crime, nobody was hurt, nobody was injured."
Last month, the lawyer for Ms Hallam urged the court not to convict or jail her because she needed to travel overseas as part of her new job.
The district court was told she was planning to take up employment at a privately-owned cannabis farm in northern New South Wales, known as the Australian Cannabis University.
The court heard its founder Dolph Cooke, who holds a licence to grow cannabis for medicinal purposes, wanted to hire Hallam as an employee for her expertise in oil production.
'She has given life back to so many'
Her friends and supporters, including former Dignity Party MP Kelly Vincent, applauded as Ms Hallam left the courtroom.
"Tears of joy and applause in the court today from myself and so many others because we've finally reached the point where a judge has recognised that Jenny Hallam is a healer, not a dealer," Ms Vincent said.
"Without medical cannabis products, which I have got legally myself — an over-the-counter product — I wouldn't be able to be here today. I would still be in bed, crying and screaming in pain.
"Instead I'm here supporting my friend, celebrating with my friend, before going off to a full day of work, study and looking after my family.
"She has given life back to so many and she's an inspiration and a credit to our community."
More to come.