A RENFREWSHIRE dog lover facing jail over a £3,000 cannabis cultivation – which was discovered because he gave police the keys to his flat while worried for his pet’s welfare – has to wait to learn his fate.

Darren Lorimer was arrested by police in October over claims he had assaulted a woman in Paisley’s Ladyburn Street, where he lives.

He was said to have left Leighanne O’Callaghan injured by raining punches on her head, kicking her, grabbing her and throwing her on to a car on October 27 last year.

Lorimer was worried about his dog, which was still in his flat, as a result of him being held in custody over the allegations. 

He informed officers about his pet and, when they went to check on the animal, discovered the cannabis farm.

The details emerged previously when Lorimer appeared in the dock at Paisley Sheriff Court to be sentenced.

He had earlier pleaded guilty to producing cannabis in exchange for the charges relating to Ms O’Callaghan, including a charge of being threatening or abusive, being dropped.

Sheriff Colin Pettigrew was told officers found 15 plants and hydroponic equipment in a cupboard in a bedroom and that the cultivation was worth £3,000.

Defence solicitor Paul Lynch said: “That is the potential yield. It was Mr Lorimer himself who grew it. He was arrested in relation to charge two [the threatening or abusive behaviour charge].

“He advised police there was a young dog still within the property and was concerned about being taken into custody. He gave police officers the keys to his property and that’s how he comes to be before the court.”

He asked Sheriff James Spy to spare Lorimer jail, but the judge said he needed a medical report to check Lorimer was fit for unpaid work, “even if it’s just for light duties” and adjourned the case until this week for that to be done.

Lorimer said from the dock: “I pleaded guilty to try and get this over and done with. I had a way out of this.

“I’m trying to counter charge people that were trying to stab me.

“This is really, really bad for me.”

But when he returned to the dock, the case was adjourned again, until later in the year, for the medical report to be produced, meaning he is yet to learn his fate.

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