Gardaí found 269 anxiety tablets hidden in couch at Cork man's home, court hears

Gardaí found 269 anxiety tablets hidden in couch at Cork man's home, court hears

The Courthouse on Anglesea Street, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

GARDAÍ searching for drugs in an apartment found 269 of the anxiety tablets Alprazolam concealed in the arm of a couch and today a Cork man with a history of drug problems admitted having the tablets for sale or supply.

Defence solicitor, Donal Daly, said that while Donal O’Mahony of 124 Lower Glanmire Road, Cork, was pleading guilty to the supply charge, the reality was that he was using a lot of medication for anxiety at that time.

“I was taking 30 Xanax every day at one stage and they are very strong,” Donal O’Mahony told Judge Con O’Leary at Cork District Court today.

O’Mahony pleaded also pleaded guilty to handling a stolen bicycle.

Inspector Margaret Murrell outlined the background to the offences at Cork District Court.

On December 17 2019 at Lower Glanmire Road, Garda Michael Walsh observed the man acting suspiciously and he was searched on the road. He handed over a cannabis joint.

He was taken to the Bridewell garda station and two packets of Alprazolam were found, each containing ten tablets. There was a follow-up search at the defendant’s home, with O’Mahony’s cooperation. He gave the gardaí the key to get in.

Further small quantities of cannabis – herb and resin – were found in the house. 269 Alprazolam tablets were found concealed in the right arm of the couch. The inspector said the value of the tablets was €538.

Insp. Murrell said O’Mahony had two convictions for dealing drugs previously and nine for having drugs for his own use. He also had 26 convictions for burglary.

Mr Daly, solicitor, said the accused had not received a custodial sentence since 2014 and had been doing much better in his life recently.

On February 28, he was caught cycling a stolen bike. He said he had bought it for €20. Mr Daly said he was reckless as whether it was stolen or not.

The defendant said the prosecuting guard told him that he had video evidence of someone else stealing the bicycle five days earlier.

Judge O’Leary ordered the defendant, who is in his thirties, to do 240 hours of community service instead of three months in prison. He put him on a 12-month probation bond on the charge of handling stolen property.

Judge O’Leary expressed concern about the fact that the accused was carrying 20 Alprazolam tablets when he was stopped by gardaí. The defendant explained that he was taking very large quantities of the medication at that time.

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