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Football coach sold heroin to pay off debt to dealers

A SOCCER coach sold heroin to undercover gardai after he built up substantial drug debts, a court heard.

Darren Mulholland (29) had a cocaine problem but he is now clean from drugs and coaching a junior football team.

Judge David McHugh imposed an eight- month sentence suspended for two years.

The defendant, of Glenhill Grove in Finglas, admitted before Blanchardstown District Court to three counts of possession of heroin for sale or supply.

The offences under the misuse of drugs act took place at Cardiffsbridge Road in Finglas on January 7, 2013 and at Seamus Ennis Road, also in Finglas, on January 9 and January 22, 2013.

Sgt Maria Callaghan said that on each occasion undercover officers contacted Mulholland by phone and he sold them single deals of heroin, worth around €20.

The court heard Mulholland has 13 previous convictions.

Defence solicitor Fiona Brennan said Mulholland has battled a cocaine problem for a number of years. He had debts allied to his drug problem and he was forced to start dealing to pay his debts.

Ms Brennan said Mulholland is now clean from drugs and living with his partner and her son.

Ms Brennan said the defendant was easily and repeatedly detected by gardai, and he was not running a sophisticated operation.

The solicitor also said Mulholland hasn’t been in trouble in over a year.