A DRUGS charge was struck out against a 19-year-old woman after she made a charitable contribution of €250 to the North East Multiple Sclerosis Therapy Centre at Swords District Court last week, October 1.
Shannon Darcy, Macroom Road, Coolock pleaded guilty to being in possession of €10 worth of cannabis herb for her own use. Garda Suzanne Lavin told the court that shortly after midnight on February 9th she was on mobile patrol with Garda Mark Fitzpatrick when they saw a grey coloured Lexus car parked outside the home of a known drug dealer in an estate in Malahide. The driver of the car was very agitated and when they carried out a search under the Misuse of Drugs Act, Garda Lavin said that a small amount of cannabis herb was found in the pocket of a dressing gown belonging to Ms Darcy, who was a passenger in the car. Ms Fiona D'Arcy, solicitor for Darcy, said that her client had never come to garda attention before or since this incident took place. While she had 'dabbled in drugs' before, she has not taken any drugs since February. The court heard that Darcy, who is doing a FETAC course, is in receipt of €188 per week from which she pays €50 towards a Credit Union loan and gives €50 to her parents. Ms D'Arcy asked Judge Dermot Dempsey to give consideration to allowing her client the opportunity to make a charitable contribution, stating that she had €80 with her in court. Unimpressed with this amount, Judge Dempsey stated that the defendant's priority seemed to be repaying her Credit Union loan rather than saving since her first court appearance in May to make a substantial charitable contribution. Judge Dempsey said because of this he would deal with the case by way of conviction for possession of drugs. Ms D'Arcy responded that if the judge could indicate what amount he had in mind, she would see if her client could borrow money from a friend. Judge Dempsey stated that he would require a sum of €250 and when this money was presented to the court later in the sitting, he struck out the charge against Darcy and ordered that the North East MS Therapy Centre be the beneficiary of her charitable contribution.