A Dubliner who was caught at a routine Covid checkpoint in Cork with a €140,000 stash of cannabis herb has confessed to the crime.
32-year-old Thomas Gahan of Kilmahuddrick Road, Clondalkin, was arrested by Garda Ray O’Brien on charges of possession of cannabis and having the illegal drug for the purpose of selling or supplying to others.
He pleaded guilty to a more serious charge of having the stash for sale or supply when its street value exceeded €13,000 – a charge which carries a mandatory ten-year minimum sentence unless the judge finds there are exceptional circumstances.
One of the allegations made by Garda O’Brien in the course of Gahan’s initial court appearance was that Gahan had given him a false name and details. He alleged that the defendant gave the name of a relative and supplied a number of details such as address and date of birth that tallied with the false name which he had given. Gahan later said he panicked.
Now he has also pleaded guilty to giving the false details and driving while there was cocaine in his blood.
The checkpoint that gave rise to the charges was on the M8 at Killydonoghue in Glanmire and the defendant was stopped driving his van at 8.20pm on Tuesday March 23. His vehicle was searched at the scene and a large amount of suspected cannabis herb with a street value of €140,000 was found in the rear of the van.
Defence senior counsel Ray Boland said, “He is under very strict bail conditions – to sign on daily, continue with his employer and provide clean urinalysis every two weeks.”
Mr Boland said the accused had commenced drug counselling.
“It is a very significant amount of cannabis - €140,000 worth – which he brought from Dublin to Cork.
"He has addressed his drug issue – borne out by clean urinalysis.”
There was no prosecution objection to sentencing being adjourned with the accused remanded on continuing bail.
Judge Helen Boyle adjourned the case for that purpose until February 18 2022.