Saturday 24 February 2018

Jobless man (45) charged after gardai seize €1.4m of cocaine and cannabis

Stock picture
Stock picture

Andrew Phelan

A jobless man has been charged over an estimated €1.4m cocaine and cannabis seizure at a lockup in north Dublin.

Emmett Fogarty (45) appeared in court charged with possession of drugs following a garda raid on the premises in a business park in which a cache of ammunition was also found.

Judge Anthony Halpin granted him bail totalling €15,000, of which €10,000 must be lodged in cash.

Mr Fogarty was remanded in custody until he can take bail up.

The accused, with an address at Brookhaven Drive, Blanchardstown is charged with possession of both drugs with intent to sell or supply.

The offences are alleged to have taken place at Mount Dillon Business Park, Brookville Park, Malahide Road on March 31.

Garda Ivor Scully of the Special Crime Task Force told Dublin District Court the defendant made no reply to the charges after caution at Coolock Garda Station.

Objecting to bail, he cited the seriousness of the charges, saying the premises was searched under a drugs warrant and it was alleged that 20kg of cocaine was found, along with 3kg of cannabis.

It was further alleged there were 300 rounds of ammunition as well as components for six different types of firearm, magazines, gun barrels and GPS trackers.

There were no charges in relation to the ammunition and firearm components and directions on these were being sought from the DPP, Garda Scully said.

He told the court the accused was detained at Coolock Garda Station and made a number of admissions in relation to the items seized.

The drugs had a combined estimated value of €1.4m, Garda Scully said.

The accused was believed to have been in control of the lockup and there were allegedly documents linking him to it.

It was believed he had control and custody of the drugs.

Garda Scully said he believed the accused would commit offences, could interfere with witnesses and was a "high" flight risk. He also said there was a possibility of further serious charges.

He alleged Mr Fogarty was leaseholder of the lockup under a false alias and address and was capable of concealing his identity.

Applying for bail, defence solicitor Anarine McAllister said Mr Fogarty enjoys a presumption of innocence.

He was living with his wife, who was present in court. The accused had worked in hospitality but was now on jobseekers' allowance.

The garda agreed with Ms McAllister that the defendant had no substance abuse problem.

Mr Fogarty was willing to abide by conditions and make a "sizeable cash lodgement" for bai.

Asked if this would allay his fears, Garda Scully said he would be "somewhat satisfied in that regard."

Judge Halpin said he was concerned that the accused was unemployed, yet he had leased a commercial premises.

Ms McAllister said this was an allegation.

Garda Scully told the judge about €500 per month was paid for the lockup. Ms McAllister said there was "nothing sophisticated."

"No, it was a simple lockup," the garda agreed.

Judge Halpin granted bail in the defendant's own cash bond of €5,000 and an independent surety of €10,000, half of which is to be lodged in cash.

He must sign on daily at Blanchardstown Garda Station, observe a curfew and surrender his passport.

Judge Halpin remanded him in custody with consent to bail, to appear in Cloverhill District Court on April 5, for the directions of the DPP to be made available.

The defendant, wearing a grey jumper, purple shirt, blue jeans and brown shoes, did not address the court.

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