Saturday 7 December 2019

Celebrity chef's son bailed to spend Christmas in rehab

Allen's drugs sentencing put back by judge

‘Serious offence’: Joshua Allen, pictured on far right leaving Cork Circuit Criminal Court with his father Isaac Allen and brother Lucca (rear left). Photo: Cork Courts
‘Serious offence’: Joshua Allen, pictured on far right leaving Cork Circuit Criminal Court with his father Isaac Allen and brother Lucca (rear left). Photo: Cork Courts

Ralph Riegel

Joshua Allen (19), the son of celebrity TV chef Rachel Allen, will spend Christmas in a residential addiction treatment centre after being granted bail and released from Cork Prison on drugs charges.

The revelation came as Judge Sean O'Donnabháin adjourned sentencing of the teenager on a charge of possession for sale or supply of €22,000 worth of cannabis at the world-famous Ballymaloe Cookery School until the February 2020 sitting of Cork Circuit Criminal Court. Judge O'Donnabháin remanded the teen on bail on condition he immediately attends a residential drug treatment programme.

He also made an order that Mr Allen will now come under the supervision of the Probation and Welfare Service (PWS). Judge O'Donnabháin stressed that Mr Allen is to comply with all instructions of the treatment centre and, if he leaves the centre without permission, the PWS is to be immediately informed. It, in turn, will then inform gardaí.

Mr Allen is also the grandson of Darina Allen and the great-grandson of the late founder of Ballymaloe, Myrtle Allen.

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He had been remanded in custody to Cork Prison after his last court appearance when the judge expressed dissatisfaction with his progress as outlined in a PWS report.

"All of this now is strictly on the understanding that I have not passed sentence and there are no guarantees being made," he said. Defence counsel Síobhan Lankford SC said her client had secured a bed at a residential treatment centre and was immediately willing to commence a 12-week programme.

He will attend the treatment centre until he appears again before Cork Circuit Criminal Court on February 28.

Mr Allen, who appeared in court wearing a grey suit and white shirt, did not speak during the hearing yesterday.

On November 8, Judge O'Donnabháin had warned that the PWS assessment of Mr Allen's progress had been singularly unimpressive.

"This lad has not matured in the manner I would expect or require of someone coming before the court on such a serious charge.

"He is knitting his own jumper. I will not let him do that.

"He is going from the probation service and self-referring elsewhere," he warned.

"He has been allowed to knit his own cardigan. It cannot be allowed to continue.

"It is a serious offence and everyone knew it was a serious offence."

The court previously heard that, since the defendant engaged with a drug treatment programme, there had been evidence of him relapsing a number of times.

He had also missed a number of scheduled appointments as part of the drug rehabilitation programme.

Mr Allen came before the Circuit Criminal Court on a signed plea of guilty from Midleton District Court.

The most serious charge he faced was possession for sale or supply of €22,000 worth of cannabis contrary to Section 15 (A) of the Misuse of Drugs Act.

Mr Allen, the son of Ms Allen and her husband Isaac, lives at Ballinamona, in Shanagarry.

Irish Independent

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