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Ex-soldier jailed over €144k steroids racket

AN ex-soldier who dealt up to €144,000 of steroids bought on the black market has been jailed for two years.

His girlfriend had her sentence adjourned at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.

Judge Katherine Delahunt told Bernard Foy (38) and Anna Nawroka (27), who have a child together, that the court "takes a very serious view of devastating effects drugs can have on people".

The judge said she took into account Foy's "service to his country" while he served in the army before his honourable discharge, but said a custodial sentence was appropriate.

Detective Sergeant Brian Walsh revealed that, though the couple were "essential cogs" in the steroids racket, the "main player" imported the drugs and ran a website selling them in smaller packages.

This person has since fled the country.

Foy's defence team submitted that he met this main player after he began self-medicating with steroids when he found himself unable to afford physiotherapy following a serious traffic accident in 1993, which smashed his pelvis, leg and arm.

Foy and Nawroka, of Hermitage Gardens, Lucan, pleaded guilty to supplying medicinal products without prescription at Camden Row, Dublin 2 and Monksfield Heights, Clondalkin respectively on March 22, 2005. Foy had one previous minor conviction dating back to 1991.

Det Sgt Walsh told the court that gardai set up surveillance outside Charter House on Camden Row and at a Monksfield Heights house in Clondalkin in March 2005 following an Irish Medicines Board (IMB) investigation into suspected illegal prescription drug distribution.

The detective explained that the IMB suspected these drugs, mainly anabolic steroids but also insulin and Viagra, were being posted from Thailand and Greece to a fictitious name at a hired mailbox in Charter House.

The IMB contacted the Charter House manager, who began monitoring the mailbox for twice-weekly package deliveries to a "Glen Ryan".

Gardai set up surveillance and spotted Foy pulling up on a motorcycle, entering the building and returning with a parcel addressed to "Glen Ryan".

When challenged, Foy handed over the parcel and admitted it contained steroids.

Foy's parcel contained 4,000 steroid pills worth €2,200.

Gardai seized 40,500 pills worth €22,000 at Nawroka's old Clondalkin address and the balance of the €143,707 drug bust at various Dublin locations.

Gardai also seized €6,000 in cash on Foy, which he identified as sales profits.