An isolated 54-year-old man caught with over €13,000 worth of cannabis at his home in Coachford, Co Cork, was told to do everything the Probation Service told him to do and to expect the gardaí to call again to check his home for drugs.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said yesterday he was prepared to adjourn sentencing of John Walsh on those conditions. The judge warned the accused that if the gardaí found anything at his home, Walsh would be in trouble.
Judge Ó Donnabháin also repeated his advice to the accused to get a solicitor to represent him on free legal aid.
The judge said: “It is easier for me to give out to a solicitor. It would divert me from maybe giving out to you.” Sentencing was adjourned until February 23, 2018.
John Walsh, of Inchaleagh, Coachford, Co Cork, was before Cork Circuit Criminal Court where he admitted having cannabis at his home on May 5, 2016, cultivating the cannabis and having more than €13,000 of the drug for sale or supply, which is the threshold figure which allows for a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin was told at Cork Circuit Criminal Court the accused was repeatedly offered free legal aid at the district court but said he wanted to represent himself.
Walsh said on the question of legal representation that he was pleading guilty and he had been attending with a probation officer.
Detective Garda Alan O’Sullivan said gardaí obtained a warrant to search the defendant’s home.
On meeting the gardaí at the door of his home, he immediately directed officers to a detached outhouse specially designed inside for the cultivation of cannabis, and 17 fully grown cannabis plants were found.
The detective said the drugs had a street value of €13,500. He said Walsh was very honest, forthright, and totally co-operative in all of his dealings with gardaí.
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