A 25-year-old student from Bishopstown caught with €130,000 worth of cocaine and cannabis and over €6,000 in cash at his home was jailed for three years.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin imposed a jail term of six years on the accused and suspended half of it to take into consideration the extensive efforts the accused had undertaken to turn his life around.
Garda Chris Campbell testified at Cork Circuit Criminal Court that gardaí received confidential information on the basis of which they obtained a warrant to search the property at Kenley Avenue on Model Farm Road on November 1 2018.
The accused man, Tim O’Sullivan, with an address at 22 Central Avenue, Bishopstown, Cork, was living at the Kenley address at the time.
Garda Campbell said he arrived at the Kenley Avenue property where he met the accused.
“During a search a large quantity of drugs was found,” Garda Campbell testified.
There was cocaine with a street value of €119,000, cannabis worth €13,000 and a smaller quantity of MDMA or ecstasy tablets.
Drug paraphernalia including tick-lists of buyers were also found at the scene, together with over €6,500 in cash.
The most serious charge – to which O’Sullivan signed a plea of guilty - referred to having a combination of cannabis and cocaine for sale or supply when the street value exceeded €13,000. This threshold figure allows for a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Defence senior counsel Elizabeth O’Connell said that in effect what she was seeking was either an adjournment of sentencing or a fully suspended sentence. She said that in the period of more than two years since the crime was detected the young man had cleared himself of his addiction to drugs through a rehabilitation programme.
Ms O’Connell also said the defendant had completed his studies and had set his life on a completely different direction to the one he had in November 2018. The defence senior counsel said his efforts were exceptional and that he had certified clear urinalysis.
Donal O’Sullivan BL said most of the €130,000 worth of drugs consisted of cocaine and a smaller amount was cannabis.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said of the drugs seizure, “This was a significant find. Aggravating factors are the size of the find, having to get a warrant and the combination of drugs. A prison sentence is well indicated.”
Departing from the mandatory minimum sentence of ten years, the judge said he was taking the absence of previous convictions into account.
The judge he also had to consider evidence of drug-related phone messages, tick-lists and the cash found at the scene.
A sentence of six years was imposed with half of that suspended.