Wednesday 13 December 2017

Man wanted in US over Ponzi scheme found guilty of drug lab in home

Sonya McLean

A MAN wanted in America for his role in a Ponzi scheme there has been given a suspended sentence for manufacturing drugs in his Dublin home.

Scott Cavell (29) had come to Ireland from his home in Sacramento, California, under a false name in February 2009 but a warrant was not issued for his arrest here until October 2011.

Gardai executed that warrant in March this year when they tracked Cavell down to the gym he used in the city centre.

They later searched his home looking for documentation in relation to his false passport and discovered a heavy duty-tablet press, a blender and a quantity of cannabis and MDMA.

Detective Garda Philip Ryan told Elva Duffy BL, prosecuting, that the drugs had a total street value of €23,096 and €3,500 was also found in the bedroom Cavell used in the rented house.

Cavell later told gardai that he had been manufacturing MDMA after he had initially bought the press for making steroids.

Det Gda Ryan said Cavell is facing a jail term in the States for his role in a mortgage Ponzi scheme. His accomplice in the fraud has been jailed for 14 years.

Cavell, of Tyrconnell Road, Inchicore, pleaded guilty to having drugs for sale or supply on March 6, 2012. He has been in custody pending sentence since his initial arrest.

His case had been brought forward to Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on signed pleas of guilty from the District Court.

Judge Martin Nolan sentenced Cavell to five years in prison but suspended the balance on condition that he co-operate fully with his deportation and that he not be released from jail until that deportation is organised by the gardai.

Judge Nolan said he was satisfied that Cavell had profited from the drugs operation but accepted that it is “highly likely” that he will face a lengthy prison term in America when the “federal authorities there have their say with him”.

Det Gda Ryan agreed with Philipp Rahn BL, defending, that Cavell fell in with the wrong group of people when he came to Ireland and started taking recreational drugs.

He said Cavell was “encouraged” to come to Ireland on a falsified passport and was then “steered in a certain direction by people here who then led him into this drug operation”.

Det Gda Ryan agreed with Mr Rahn that Cavell was not living any kind of luxurious lifestyle.

Mr Rahn said his client was throwing himself “at the mercy of the court” so he could return to the US as quickly as possible to face the outstanding charges there.

He said his client co-operated fully with the gardai which was of assistance to their investigation.

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