Six month sentence
suspended for ‘drug pusher’ at Picnic

A Kildare man caught with over €600 of drugs for sale at last year’s Electric Picnic had a prison sentence suspended following an appeal at last week’s Portlaoise Circuit Court.

A Kildare man caught with over €600 of drugs for sale at last year’s Electric Picnic had a prison sentence suspended following an appeal at last week’s Portlaoise Circuit Court.

Although Judge Petria McDonnell described William McCarthy, of Dunmurry, Kildare, as “a drug pusher”, she ruled that she would suspend a six-month sentence imposed on him in the district court on July 24, when he was convicted of having drugs for sale or supply.

The offence was committed at the Electric Picnic in August of last year, where he was discovered with 25 ecstasy tabs valued at €125, 100ml of liquid ecstasy valued at €100, and 13 bags of methadone valued at €400.

State solicitor, Mr Donal Dunne told the court that McCarthy admitted to gardaí he was selling the drugs to make money to pay for the weekend.

McCarthy had a previous conviction for drugs.

Barrister, Mr Rory Hanniffy said that McCarthy had been part of a larger group of friends and he had purchased the drugs to supply to the group. Mr Hanniffy said McCarthy had not been making a profit, his friends were just reimbursing him.

“It was suggested he was making a profit, but he will say he wasn’t make a profit,” said Mr Hanniffy.

Mr Hanniffy said that McCarthy had sought treatment for his drug addiction in 2009, but he then “fell into bad company”.

Defence went on to say that McCarthy has stopped using illegal substances, and urinalysis would confirm the absence of illegal substances.

Having completed a chef’s course McCarthy is now employed as a chef in Tony Roma’s restaurant, with hopes of securing employment abroad.

Addressing the court himself, McCarthy said: “I’m trying to change my life, trying to turn my life around. I am changing, you won’t see before the court again. There was no excuse for it.”

“Well, that’s a good start,” said Judge McDonnell, telling McCarthy he was “pushing drugs”.

The judge suspended the six-month sentence for 18 months, and warned McCarthy: “Be of good behaviour and stay off the drugs.”