A SEVEN-year jail term was suspended yesterday in the case against a Lithuanian man on condition that he leaves Ireland by midnight tonight.
The accused confessed to allowing his industrial unit in Carrigaline to be used to store cannabis and to handling €63,000 worth of marine goods including boats and outboard engines.
39-year-old Viktoras Andriejevas of New Bungalow, Castleterry, Mitchelstown, County Cork, was given consecutive sentences totalling seven years but suspended on condition that he would be gone from the jurisdiction by midnight. Judge Ó Donnabháin was told that the accused had a ticket to leave Ireland by ferry today.
Andriejevas was effectively released from prison yesterday on condition that he would use this ticket.
The judge said: “He allowed his premises to be used for storing of a large amount of marine parts and boats. It seems to have been a significant operation that he was aware of.
“These are difficult cases to prove. If the trial went on it would be a lengthy, difficult and problematic.
“A sentence of three years is merited.
“While on bail for that he was found allowing his premises to be used for storing of drugs. It is a significant factor that being on bail he allowed this level of criminality to occur on his premise. It was a knowing and deliberate action.” The judge imposed a four-year sentence consecutive to three years, but suspended on condition that he would leave the jurisdiction and not return for ten years.
Det. Garda Eoin O’Toole testified at Cork Circuit Criminal Court that he obtained a warrant to search on February 20 2019 at VD Fashions, Unit 5, Carrigaline industrial estate, Kilnagleary, County Cork.
€10,000 worth of cannabis was recovered following the search.
Donal McCarthy prosecution barrister said, “The prosecution is accepting it was not his business but he was allowing his premises to be used for it.” Andriejevas pleaded guilty to allowing his premises at VD Fashions, Unit 5, Carrigaline industrial estate, Kilnagleary, County Cork, to be used for the purpose.
Detective Garda Oisín Cotter testified about another set of offences related to handling stolen property.
Det. Garda Cotter said the accused had €63,000 worth of stolen property in the back of a truck which was about to be transported out of the country.
It consisted partly of expensive outboard engines, RIBs dinghies and other property stolen from various yacht clubs.
Dermot Sheehan, defence barrister, said the defendant became aware that his life might be in danger from criminals making death threats against him.
“If he were to leave the country it might help everybody,” Mr Sheehan BL said.