Tuesday 12 November 2019

Judge 'unimpressed' by chef's son on drug charge

Joshua Allen (19) has shown 'a lack of maturity'

Remanded in custody: Joshua Allen, son of celebrity chef Rachel Allen. Photo: Cork Courts Ltd
Remanded in custody: Joshua Allen, son of celebrity chef Rachel Allen. Photo: Cork Courts Ltd

Olivia Kelleher

The young son of celebrity chef Rachel Allen has been remanded in custody until the end of the month in order to give his defence counsel the opportunity to secure residential addiction treatment for the 19-year-old.

Judge Sean O Donnabháin remanded Joshua Allen in custody until November 29 after he said that his response to the serious charges he was facing was "singularly unimpressive".

Judge O Donnabháin said that the probation report had shown that the defendant "had not matured in the manner" he would expect for a person facing serious charges.

"There is no point in minimising what has happened. He has knitted his own jumper. I will not let him do that," he said.

Earlier this year, Joshua Allen, of Ballinamona, Shanagarry, Co Cork, pleaded guilty to two drugs charges at Ballymaloe Cookery School in Shanagarry, Co Cork, on August 30, 2018.

The eldest son of Rachel and Isaac Allen pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis for sale or supply when the market value exceeded €13,000 or more.

Joshua Allen pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine on the same occasion. He also pleaded guilty to the charge of possession of cannabis on September 5, 2018, in Ballinamona.

Cork Circuit Criminal Court heard that he was arrested in September 2018 after the controlled delivery of a parcel containing the cannabis to an address in east Cork.

Customs in Portlaoise Mail Centre had become suspicious of the parcel, which had a US postmark.

Det-Sgt Garda Michael O'Halloran told the court the package was intercepted by customs in Portlaoise. It was found to contain cannabis with a street value of €22,694.

A controlled delivery was arranged to Joshua Allen at Ballymaloe Cookery School, when gardaí observed him opening the package and then intercepted it. A small quantity of cocaine worth €66 was found in his wallet.

Joshua Allen was arrested and detained at Cobh garda station. He admitted it was his third or fourth time engaging in such a delivery.

He co-operated fully with gardaí and told investigating officers that he secured the drugs from a female resident of California whom he met in east Cork. He had travelled to London and paid her €2,000 in cash for the drugs.

On September 5, a further small quantity of cannabis was found in Ballinamona.

Siobhan Lankford, SC, representing Joshua Allen, said her client was without previous convictions. She acknowledged he had shown a lack of maturity in how he had responded to the serious charges.

But she said he had co-operated fully with gardaí.

Judge O Donnabháin said that Joshua Allen was "exceptionally young" to be before the courts for a Section 15A offence. He remanded him in custody until the end of the month to give his legal team an opportunity to secure residential care.

Joshua Allen was supported in court by his father Isaac.

Irish Independent

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