COCAINE with a street value of €4,000 was found under the lining of the gearstick of a car and yesterday the motorist was jailed for six months for drug-dealing.
28-year-old Michael O’Connell, formerly of Innishmore Grove, Ballincollig, County Cork, pleaded guilty to having cocaine for sale or supply.
Inspector Gillian Sinnott outlined the background to the incident for Judge Con O’Leary at Cork District Court yesterday.
The inspector said O’Connell was stopped by gardaí on July 2, 2018, and they had suspicions under the Misuse of Drugs Act.
A search of the car was undertaken and the gardaí found it underneath the lining of the car’s gearstick.
O’Connell accepted responsibility for the cocaine.
On the day the package contained a wrapped pellet of cocaine and 17 individual deal bags containing cocaine, the drugs having a total street value of approximately €4,000.
O’Connell also had a small amount of cannabis for his own use.
Defence barrister, Emmet Boyle, said the defendant was addicted to drugs at the time but was now working.
Inspector Sinnott said the accused had nine previous convictions for having drugs for his own use and one for having drugs for sale or supply.
Mr Boyle said that in respect of that previous drug-dealing charge the accused was given a three-year sentence with the last two years suspended.
That was imposed in February in a case where deals of cocaine worth over €10,000 were found concealed in a washbag under the bonnet of a car driven by O’Connell.
In that case, dealt with at Cork Circuit Criminal Court, Garda Brian Holland said, “There was a washbag under the bonnet of the car with deals of cocaine and bigger bags of cocaine.
“Charged with having the cocaine for sale or supply, he said the cannabis and cocaine on his person were for his own use and that the cocaine under the bonnet he had picked up from point A to deliver to point B, getting €200 to do this drop.
"He said he was a messenger and not a drug dealer.”