Taking cannabis to relieve his long-standing back pain because nothing else worked led a St Keverne man to Truro’s magistrates’ court, where he was fined £150 for possessing the illegal drug.

Dennis Covington, aged 48, of North Corner, St Keverne, pleaded guilty to the charge.

He told the magistrates he smoked cannabis for pain relief. His doctors had been unable to help him, he had been told an operation might not work and could leave him in more pain, and he found the drug was his only relief.

“I don’t know any other way to try to help myself,” he said, adding that his back pain had been ongoing for 15 to 20 years.

Covington also had to pay £105 costs and surcharge.