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Friday 22 August 2014

Father of five to be sentenced later for role in a drug smuggling operation

Conor Gallagher

Published 07/11/2012 | 16:47

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A father of five will be sentenced later for his role in a drug smuggling operation where fish from Africa were stuffed with cannabis and shipped to Ireland.

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Fidel Kalala (43) who is originally from the Congo was also caught with cannabis herb hidden in his car outside his home in north Dublin.

The court heard he was the “forwarding person” in Ireland for the drugs and at a low level in the operation.

Judge Mary Ellen Ring put the matter back to January next year for sentence and ordered a probation report be prepared.

Kalala of Castlefield Woods, Clonsilla pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of cannabis for sale or supply at his home on March 4, 2009.

Garda Ken Lyons told prosecuting counsel Fergal Foley BL that customs officials intercepted a package which had a strong smell coming from it. On opening it they discovered several fish which were stuffed with cannabis herb.

They organised for the package to be delivered to its intended address and when Kalala’s wife accepted it garda got a search warrant for their home.

During the search they found the fish stuffed with cannabis and when Kalala returned home they found a set of car keys on his person. The keys opened the boot of a car outside which contained more herbal cannabis.

The total amount found was just over four kilograms worth €50,000. Kalala was arrested and stood trial last month but changed his plea to guilty halfway thought the proceedings.

Defence counsel Aileen Donnelly SC said her client was low down the ladder has no previous convictions. She handed in references and added that Kalala is a good father to his five children.

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