Man sent for trial after €500k cannabis seizure

John Needham is facing drugs charges after a cannabis seizure

Eimear Cotter

A man facing drugs charges after gardai seized more than €500,000 worth of cannabis has been sent forward for trial.

John Needham (30) appeared before Blanchardstown District Court charged with possession of cannabis resin as well as having the drug for sale or supply.

Mr Needham, with an address at Carna, Suncroft, Co Kildare, is also charged under Section 15A of the misuse of drugs act, where the alleged value of the drugs is more than €13,000.

He was arrested after detectives from the Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau stopped a car and a truck on St Margaret's Road in Finglas on July 25, 2015.

It is alleged that almost 100 kilograms of cannabis resin with an estimated street value of more than €500,000 was found by officers.

The court heard the DPP has directed trial on indictment on the charges in the Circuit Court.

A State solicitor said the book of evidence was ready and had been served on the accused, who goes forward to the present sittings of Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.

Judge David McHugh gave Mr Needham the formal alibi caution, warning him he had 14 days to provide to the State details of any witnesses he proposed calling in his defence.

Defence solicitor Simon Fleming requested his colleague Michelle Finan be assigned on free legal aid.

Due to the seriousness of the charges, Mr Fleming asked the judge to assign a senior counsel as well as a junior counsel.

Judge McHugh agreed, saying he believed it was appropriate to assign two counsel.

Mr Needham has not yet indicated a plea to the charges.