Portlaoise Court: Bought car from sale of cannabis

Dealing Ballybrittas man had drugs and tick list

Portlaoise Court: Bought car from sale of cannabis

A Ballybrittas man admitted to gardaí that he was receiving up to €1,500 a week from the sale of cannabis.

Darren Donnelly (25), Canal View, Fisherstown, Ballybrittas, was charged with drug possession, and having drugs for sale of supply, at Apt 7, Mount Henry, Killenard.

Inspector Maria Conway gave evidence that on January 15 this year, the gardaí conducted a search of the accused’s home and discovered cannabis herb ready for sale, valued at €750.

The drug was arranged in €25 and €50 bags, said Insp Conway, and also found was a tick list of people who owed money for drugs, as well as mobile phones.

In addition, the gardaí recovered €5,810 in cash. All the items were found in a locker in the accused’s bedroom.

When questioned, Donnelly admitted he had been receiving €750 twice a week from drug dealing.

He told the gardaí that he had spent a lot of drug money on the purchase of a car, and claimed that the €5,810 cash found was the result of his selling the car thereafter.

Donnelly had no previous convictions.

Defence, Mr Philip Meagher said his client had been using cannabis for around eight years.

During the course of purchasing the drug he used to buy some extra and got into the habit of supplying to acquaintances and friends.

“He wasn’t a major player, but he accepts he was supplying,” said defence.

Mr Meagher said that his client claimed he had bought the car primarily from money he had saved up over a number of years, although this claim did not concur with the State’s evidence that the car was bought with the proceeds of drug dealing.

Mr Meagher concluded by saying that his client was no longer using cannabis, as this incident had proven to be a watershed moment in his life.

Judge Catherine Staines told the accused he was “dealing in misery” by selling drugs to young people. Of the money seized by the State, Judge Staines directed that €2,000 go to Coote Street in Portlaoise, €2,000 go to Merchant’s Quay, and €1,800 go to the Ana Liffey Project, all of which provide services for drug addiction.

The matter was adjourned to November 10, for a community service report and probation report.