A VOLUNTEER trainer and assistant manager with Shamrock Rovers Football Club has been sentenced to eight years, with three years suspended, for possession of almost €70,000 of cocaine.
Wayne Deans (30) of Swiftbrook Drive, Tallaght was caught with the drugs on his kitchen table.
He said he was cutting and packing it for someone else in return for a small amount of cocaine. His wife was in the house at the time and his two children were playing outside.
He pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of just under a kilogram of cocaine at his home on February 12, 2009.
The court heard that Deans was heavily involved with several football clubs, including Shamrock Rovers FC, with whom he works as a volunteer trainer and assistant manager.
Judge Katherine Delahunt had adjourned sentencing earlier this month, commenting that Deans was "way up the ladder" as he was "actively involved with the distribution of drugs".
Judge Delahunt said that she was satisfied that there were exceptional circumstances in the case, as Deans was a man of a previously unblemished character who had been a very positive influence in his community.
However, in suspending three years of his eight year sentence, Judge Delahunt said that Deans was a 30-year-old man and the court could not accept that he was at the lower end of the scale of drug offenders.
Garda Liam Brennan told Martina Baxter, prosecuting, that he got a search warrant for Deans' house after receiving a confidential tip-off. When gardai called to the house they found the front door open and went inside. Deans and his wife were inside and the drugs were on the kitchen table in powder and rock form. Gardai also found plastic bags and weighing scales. Deans was arrested and made immediate admissions.
He said he was cutting and bagging the cocaine in return for drugs for his own use. He said he would get several ounces in return. Deans told gardai that a man had dropped the drugs off earlier that day.
He said he was a cocaine addict who took half an ounce a week and also sold small amounts to his friends.
Garrett Baker, defending, said Deans now owes €20,000 to the drug dealers because of the seizure and had lost his job as a painter and decorator.
He said he had played football about six times a week up until two years ago. He was unable to continue playing after he injured his ankle and started socialising with "the wrong crowd", leading to his drug addiction.