East Coast couple could lose house in cannabis case

A Hicks Bay couple stand to lose their rural property after they were caught with kilograms of cannabis ready for sale, and 758 plants.

Wharo Daniel Taniora, 51, and Jaqueline Sophia Brooking, 40, appeared together in Gisborne District Court during a Crown call- over fixture.

Each pleaded guilty to a jointly-laid charge of possession of cannabis for sale, relating to February 21, last year.

Taniora also pleaded guilty to cultivating cannabis, relating to offending between February 19 and 21 last year, and two counts of attempting to import seeds (in 2015).

Judge Warren Cathcart convicted and remanded the pair for sentence on August 23.

Each was granted bail, which was not opposed by the Crown.

Prosecutor Megan Mitchell said keeping the couple in the community would make it easier to resolve matters surrounding an instrument forfeiture order the Crown will be seeking under the Criminal Proceeds (Recovery) Act. The order will affect the couple’s jointly-owned home in Hicks Bay.

It will also affect the sentence imposed, possibly bringing Taniora’s sentence within the range for home detention.

Counsel Bill Nabney asked for pre-sentence reports to traverse both Taniora and Brooking’s suitability for electronically-monitored sentences.

Brooking’s sentence, given her lesser involvement, is likely — even without the forfeiture order — to be within range of the homebased option.

The exact number of kilograms of the drug with which the couple was found, is as yet unknown but would be determined ahead of sentencing, the court was told.

A Hicks Bay couple stand to lose their rural property after they were caught with kilograms of cannabis ready for sale, and 758 plants.

Wharo Daniel Taniora, 51, and Jaqueline Sophia Brooking, 40, appeared together in Gisborne District Court during a Crown call- over fixture.

Each pleaded guilty to a jointly-laid charge of possession of cannabis for sale, relating to February 21, last year.

Taniora also pleaded guilty to cultivating cannabis, relating to offending between February 19 and 21 last year, and two counts of attempting to import seeds (in 2015).

Judge Warren Cathcart convicted and remanded the pair for sentence on August 23.

Each was granted bail, which was not opposed by the Crown.

Prosecutor Megan Mitchell said keeping the couple in the community would make it easier to resolve matters surrounding an instrument forfeiture order the Crown will be seeking under the Criminal Proceeds (Recovery) Act. The order will affect the couple’s jointly-owned home in Hicks Bay.

It will also affect the sentence imposed, possibly bringing Taniora’s sentence within the range for home detention.

Counsel Bill Nabney asked for pre-sentence reports to traverse both Taniora and Brooking’s suitability for electronically-monitored sentences.

Brooking’s sentence, given her lesser involvement, is likely — even without the forfeiture order — to be within range of the homebased option.

The exact number of kilograms of the drug with which the couple was found, is as yet unknown but would be determined ahead of sentencing, the court was told.

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