Medicinal marijuana prescription no excuse for drug driving
A Hatton Vale man who has a prescription for medicinal marijuana has been charged for drug driving, despite having a legal script from his doctor.
Andrew Eugene Koroleff was initially intercepted and found to be driving with THC in his system on November 6, on the Warrego Highway at Prenzlau.
He first appeared in court on January 11, where he told the magistrate of the day that he had a prescription for medicinal cannabis and was participating in a program for his pain.
The prosecution took copies of his evidence but on Monday, March 15, in the Gatton Magistrates Court, said that participants in the program were advised not to drive.
Police prosecutor sergeant Al Windsor told the court that Koroleff was participating in the medicinal cannabis program, but practitioners advised the product had the active THC ingredient.
"Positive indication regardless of their participation in the program is still prosecutable," sergeant Windsor said.
Koroleff, who represented himself in court, said he had taken his prescription medication at 5.30am of November 6 following severe back pain and went back to sleep.
"I had gone back to sleep and I got up feeling no impairment from it," Koroleff said.
"It is stated in a letter I had that generally about five to six hours it can be present in the system, but this is a very grey area.
"Unfortunately, it's an error of misjudgment. I really do need to keep my licence if possible."
Magistrate Graham Osborne said there was a mandatory disqualification, and in this circumstance, he offered the lowest penalty.
Koroleff pleaded guilty to one charge of drug driving.
He was fined $150 and disqualified from driving for 1 month.