'Out of his depth': Defence asks for fully suspended sentence for Cork man found with cocaine worth €52k 

The drugs were detected as part of an operation where Gardaí had surveillance on another individual.
'Out of his depth': Defence asks for fully suspended sentence for Cork man found with cocaine worth €52k 

The most serious charge he faces is having cocaine on July 17 2020 at his home for the purpose of sale or supply at a time when its street value exceeded €13,000.

Over €50,000 worth of cocaine was seized at a property in Ballincollig and now a 49-year-old man is facing sentence for his part in the matter.

Arthur Ward of An Caisleán Close, Ballincollig, County Cork, appeared at Cork Circuit Criminal Court.

The most serious charge he faces is having cocaine on July 17 2020 at his home for the purpose of sale or supply at a time when its street value exceeded €13,000 – the threshold figure for a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years unless there are exceptional circumstances.

Detective Garda Declan Keane said the drugs were detected as part of an operation where they had surveillance on another individual.

Arthur Ward went to a premises in Ballincollig and went in to the property for half an hour.

By the time he drove away from the property a package had been placed in his vehicle.

Gardaí called to his home soon afterwards to conduct a search and he admitted that there was a package in his vehicle.

It was three quarters of a kilo of cocaine with a street value of €52,000.

No previous convictions 

Defence barrister, Ronan Barnes, stressed, “He was not the target of this operation. He has no previous convictions.”

Det. Garda Keane agreed with the suggestion that the accused was unlikely to face court proceedings again in the future. 

The detective said of Arthur Ward, “He was out of his depth. 

"He was asked to hold the package and for whatever reasons he decided to do that.” 

Mr Barnes BL said the accused was in full time employment and had had given clear urinalysis showing he was clear of drugs since. 

Mr Barnes accepted he was asking a lot but suggested that it was a suitable case for a fully suspended sentence.

Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin remanded Ward on bail until September 29 for sentencing and said he would finalise it on that date.

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