Collopy operation ‘the top of the pyramid’ in Limerick heroin scene

Kieran Collopy, left, who appeared at Limerick Circuit Court with his brother Brian, right.

What was described as the top of the pyramid in the Limerick heroin distribution scene was uncovered in the kitchen of a council house during a garda raid.

After a drugs squad stormed two adjoining and connected houses in St Mary’s Park, Limerick, last December, they found brothers, Kieran and Brian Collopy involved in packaging heroin.

As well as heroin found on the kitchen worktop, traces of the drug were found in a saucepan located in a bath upstairs.

Details of the Garda operation were outlined at Limerick Circuit Court yesterday where Kieran Collopy, aged 40, of St Ita’s St, St Mary’s Park, and Brian Collopy, aged 43, of Killonan, Ballysimon, Limerick, have pleaded guilty to having heroin worth more than €37,000 for sale or supply.

Det Sgt Alan Cullen told the court that during the months prior to the raid, Brian Collopy, who is unemployed and drawing social welfare, travelled to Spain 11 times.

Det Sgt Cullen said the operation being run by the Collopys was the top of the pyramid in the Limerick heroin scene.

The brothers were found packaging heroin into 1oz packs which they then sold on to wholesalers who broke the deals down to 3gm amounts before the deals were further broken down when sold on the street.

Gardaí raided 34 and 36 St Ita’s St, on December 15, 2015. The houses are interconnected. Gardaí forced doors in both houses at around 7pm and as they entered they heard the sound of two distinct footsteps on the stairs.

Gardaí met one of the brothers coming from an upstairs bathroom and the other was in a front upstairs bedroom.

In the kitchen, they found 10 plastic bags each containing 1oz of heroin. Latex cloves and weighing scales were found in the kitchen.

Part of a latex glove and traces of heroin were also found on the stairs and the bathroom. A saucepan in the bath was found to have traces of heroin.

Det Sgt Cullen said the brothers had run up the stairs in an effort to dispose of heroin which had not been bagged.

“They effectively ran themselves into a corner,” he said.

Det Sgt Cullen said: “As the drugs scene in Limerick goes, this would be top of the pyramid. An operation was in progress as gardaí attempted to effect entry to the house.”

Judge Tom O’Donnell said he will pass sentence tomorrow and remanded the two brothers in custody.


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