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Jail for Bandon man who ‘clearly is in the business of selling drugs’

December 9th, 2022 7:05 AM

By Southern Star Team

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A DISTRICT court judge has said that a Bandon man involved in selling drugs has a ‘business acumen’ and is clearly well established in the business after he was caught with a total of €4,000 in cash from the proceeds of selling drugs.

Judge James McNulty made the comment when dealing with the case of Ayman Foley (19) at a recent sitting of Bandon District Court.

Mr Foley of 32 Ardan, Bandon pleaded guilty to the possession of drugs and the possession of drugs for sale or supply on two separate occasions from last year.

Insp Kay O’Donoghue told the court that on February 3rd last year Gda Sean O’Connor along with members of the divisional drugs unit arrived at the defendant’s home at 10.30pm with a search warrant for drugs.

‘Gda O’Connor located a small quantity of cannabis and a digital weighing scales with white powder on it and he found a further three wraps of cannabis herb in the sitting room valued at €200, while the cocaine was valued at €5,’ said Insp O’Donoghue.

‘He also found a large quantity of cash – €2,000 in €50 notes and €890 as well and there was no reasonable excuse for having the money and they were the proceeds from selling drugs.’

Mr Foley’s phone was seized but he refused to give gardaí the passcode to access it.

However, they managed to access the messages, which related to the sale and supply of drugs.

The court heard that the defendant has no previous convictions.

The second incident occurred on October 30th last year when Gda O’Connor was on mobile patrol on the Glasslyn Road when he saw two males in suspicious circumstances.

‘They were rolling a joint on a wheelie bin and there was a strong smell of cannabis from them.

‘The defendant was shuffling his trousers and when he was searched Gda O’Connor found €1,095 in his wallet, mostly in €50 notes.

‘The search for drugs was negative there but two wraps of cocaine were later found on him at Bandon Garda Station, which were valued at €140.’

Solicitor Myra Dinneen said this is the first time her client has been before the court.

She said he has had his own difficulties growing up and has a troubled relationship with his father.

Ms Dinneen asked Judge McNulty if the court would consider the preparation of a probation report on her client and that she said that he would be willing to engage in drug testing.

However, Judge McNulty declined the request.

He said that Mr Foley is well established in the business and is ‘clearly in the business’ and there was no evidence of addiction or clearing drug debts.

‘The charges are so serious and the facts are so alarming and he had €2,000 in cash when he was caught the first time – he’s clearly in the business of selling drugs.

‘He clearly has a business acumen,’ added Judge McNulty.

He added that Mr Foley is not a child and that just eight months later he is caught with more drugs and cash.

He sentenced him to six months in prison on the sale or supply charge from February.

He also directed him to enter a probation bond on the simple possession charge and be placed under the supervision of the probation services for two years.

On the October charge of sale or supply and possession, Judge McNulty convicted and sentenced him to 10 months in prison.

He ordered that the sentence  run concurrently to the other sentence.

He also convicted and fined him €1,000 for cocaine possession from the same date and gave him 90 days to pay the fine.

Recognisances for an appeal were fixed in the defendant’s own bond of €100 with no cash required but he also attached conditions to his release on bail.

These included giving oral samples on request while also not engaging in the sale, supply, collection, storage or delivery of any controlled drugs.

The judge also directed that he is not to be involved in the collection of drug debts, or associate with persons involved in the business of sale and supply.

‘If he breaches these conditions, his bail will be revoked and he will go to prison while he awaits his appeal,’ said Judge McNulty.

The court also forfeited over €4,000 in cash seized from Mr Foley and Judge McNulty granted him free legal aid.

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