Saturday 19 August 2017

Former soccer star charged over €240,000 cannabis haul

League of Ireland soccer star Robert Bayly will face his next hearing on Thursday. Photo: Sportsfile
League of Ireland soccer star Robert Bayly will face his next hearing on Thursday. Photo: Sportsfile

Tom Tuite

A former Leeds United and Republic of Ireland youth team soccer player has been remanded in custody after he was charged over a cannabis seizure in Dublin.

League of Ireland soccer star Robert Bayly (29) will face his next hearing on Thursday.

Cannabis herb with an estimated street value of €240,000 was seized when gardaí stopped a car at Cherry Orchard Drive, Ballyfermot, Dublin 10, on Friday at approximately 6.45pm.

The 29-year-old was arrested at the scene.

He was taken to Ronanstown Garda Station and detained for questioning under Section Two of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act 1996 before he was brought to appear before Judge Victor Blake during a weekend sitting of Dublin District Court.

The currently unsigned midfielder, from Ballyfermot in Dublin, is charged with possessing cannabis with intent to sell or supply in connection with the seizure. The charge is contrary to the Misuse of Drugs Act.

Dressed in a green top and tracksuit bottoms, he remained silent during the brief court hearing.

Garda Neil McGrath told the court that when he charged Mr Bayly on Saturday evening, the accused had no reply.

There was no application for bail.

Defence solicitor Wayne Kenny told the court he had serious concerns for the mental health of his client who has not yet indicated how he will plead to the charges.

Judge Blake directed that Bayly would receive medical attention in prison.

He also agreed to Mr Kenny's request to grant legal aid to the defendant, who was remanded in custody to appear at Cloverhill District Court on May 18 next.

As a youth, Mr Bayly signed for Leeds United in 2006 and spent two seasons at Elland Road before returning to a distinguished League of Ireland career.

He has played for Shamrock Rovers, Bohemians, Monaghan United, Longford Town, Drogheda United, Bluebell United, Waterford FC and Shelbourne, his most recent club, which announced in March that he left the club by mutual consent.

The Dubliner was capped for the Republic of Ireland team at youth and under-19 level while playing for Cherry Orchard.

He also spent a season with Belfast club Cliftonville in 2015.

Irish Independent

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