News Courts

Wednesday 24 September 2014

Father-of-three hid drugs in a chicken roll for friend in Garda custody, court told

Andrew Phelan

Published 11/04/2014 | 07:54

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A FATHER-of-three hid cannabis inside a chicken roll in an attempt to smuggle the drug into a prisoner in custody in a Dublin garda station.

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Thomas Griffin (40) was caught when officers went through the food he brought in to a man in custody at the city centre station.

Gardai also found a second small quantity of the drug at his home in a follow-up search later.

Griffin, with an address at Ross Road, Dublin 8, pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis with intent to supply at Kevin Street Garda Station on November 6, 2013.

He also admitted a charge of simple possession of cannabis at his home on last November 14.

Judge Alan Mitchell said it was a serious offence and sentenced him to three months in jail, suspended for a year. He also fined the defendant €100.

A garda sergeant said the accused went to the station at 1.20pm on the day and handed some items to a garda to be given to a person who was in custody at the time.

The contents were searched and the cannabis was found inside a chicken roll.

In the follow-up search, when gardai arrived at his home, Griffin was co-operative and handed over another piece of cannabis.

DISPOSAL

The DPP had directed summary disposal of the case at District Court level on a guilty plea only.

Judge Alan Mitchell accepted jurisdiction to deal with it, after hearing a summary of the evidence.

The accused had previous convictions for drugs offences.

Defence Solicitor John Bermingham said the mother of Griffin’s two eldest children had passed away in tragic circumstances and he had given up work to look after them.

He was now also primary carer for his mother.

The court heard Griffin had a good work history before this.

The defendant had a heroin problem in his youth, but had detoxed and was now drug-free, Mr Bermingham said.

He is to become a grandfather for the first time in the next few months, when his eldest daughter is due to have a baby.

Judge Mitchell said sale and supply of drugs had to be taken seriously at all times and “this was an attempt to pass drugs into a prisoner in a garda station”.

The judge warned that he would activate the sentence if the defendant came before him again in the next 12 months.

Irish Independent

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