Monday 18 December 2017

Drug dealer forfeits €36,000 in cash seized during raid on car and home

Conor Gallagher and Sonya McLean

A COURT has ordered that more than €36,000 found in a convicted drug dealer’s car and home should be forfeited to the State.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that Thomas Delaney (41), of Walkinstown Crescent, Walkinstown, has previously served five years for possession of drugs for sale or supply.

Kerida Naidoo BL, prosecuting, read from an affidavit that gardai had secured a warrant to search Delaney’s home in June 2009 on the basis that he was involved in drug trafficking.

His vehicle was stopped on the Walkinstown Road on June 25 that year and €9,300 was found hidden in the handbrake of the vehicle.

Delaney initially said to gardai he couldn’t tell them who owned the cash because he would get a bullet in his head but some time later, in an affidavit, claimed that €6,000 of it belonged to his mother.

That same day gardai executed the warrant to search his home and a further €27,000 was found in a child’s bed under a duvet. The door of the bedroom had been locked with a padlock.

Delaney said that it was his sister’s home. He had key to the padlock and the front door with him.

He later claimed that he had been given this money by a friend, David Long, in order to buy a bread van as he was intending to start his own bread round.

The court heard Mr Long lives in Spain and has convictions for possessing 5kg of cocaine in Germany and possession of opium in Holland.

Judge Mary Ellen Ring said that Delaney claimed in an affidavit prepared for the hearing that he has not been convicted of any drug offence since his release from prison.

However, she noted from an affidavit from a Garda Peter Maguire that Delaney was convicted for possession of drugs in October 2009.

“His lack of candour in this regards puts his version of events under a different light,” Judge Ring said.

She said it was surprising that Delaney hadn’t admitted immediately that some of the money found in the car belonged to his mother.

She also noted that the woman’s bank statements, which were due to be provided to the court to support this claim, “were not forthcoming”.

The judge said she was also satisfied that there was not appropriate documentation in court to support Delaney’s claim that the rest of the cash belonged to Mr Long.

“The only conclusion the court can come to is that these two people, Mrs Delaney and Mr Long, are not the source of the money received,” Judge Ring said.

“On the balance of probabilities I am satisfied that the cash directly or indirectly represented the proceeds of crime or was intended for the use of criminal activity and I direct its forfeiture to the exchequer,” Judge Ring said.

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