Former mayor’s son in court on drugs charges

May 4th, 2023 7:10 AM

By Southern Star Team

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THE son of a former Bantry mayor has received a two-year suspended sentence after gardaí found over €4,000 worth of cannabis at his property. 

When gardaí searched the home of Henry Hegarty, (son of former Cllr Mary Hegarty, also a former town mayor), on December 10th 2019,  they found over €17,000 in cash in a fridge and the cannabis in other locations, including the hot press, bedroom and utility room in the property at Ballylickey.

Det Gda Andrew Manning said he also found a letter which the accused had written promising that he would stop dealing drugs.

Det Gda Manning said that when the defendant, who is now living at Weir Street in Bandon, was interviewed in relation to the drugs, he tried to diminish his own responsibility in the matter, saying he was sharing or giving the drugs to friends. The detective said: ‘I think it was more than that.’ 

It was accepted by the prosecution at Cork Circuit Criminal Court that €15,000 of the money was legitimately loaned by a third party to the accused, so that he could pay monies owed to the Revenue Commissioner and others. This was returned to the 43-year-old defendant. The remaining €2,270 was forfeited to the State.

Emmet Boyle, defence barrister, said the defendant went to boarding school in Leinster, and played rugby there. The defendant is now divorced but at the time of the offence of having cannabis for sale he was abusing substances ‘heavily’.

Mr Boyle said that people spoke well of the accused and that he had worked since his early 20s and had at times been an employer also. He had a number of enterprises in the food business.

Judge Helen Boyle said an aggravating factor in the case was that the accused had the trappings of drug-dealing, in the form of weighing scales and deal bags. In terms of mitigation, he did not have previous drug-related convictions and had a good work and sports history.

The judge imposed a total sentence of two years suspended.

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