Judge warns drug dealer of ‘damage he could do’

A former business owner who was found with over €5,000 worth of drugs for sale and hidden in a paint bucket in his van, has been jailed for six months as a judge warned of the “outrageous” damage he could do to children by selling drugs.

Unemployed for almost seven years since his steel fabrication business closed mid-recession, Niall Griffin, aged 49, was still living in “relative comfort” at his Jeremy Hall apartment on Nicholas St, Limerick, according to gardaí who had him “on their radar”, Limerick District Court heard.

On foot of confidential information, Sgt Donal Cronin told the court that gardaí from the Divisional Drugs Unit searched Griffin’s apartment and found drug paraphernalia on May 15 last year.

During a search of Griffin’s Northern Ireland-registered van parked outside, €4,780 worth of cannabis and €540 worth of Xanax tablets were found concealed in a paint tin.

The 49-year-old admitted having the drugs for sale and supply to others.

“He had a drug habit and one thing led to another,” said John Herbert, defending, adding that it was “a disastrous decision to make”.

Judge O’Leary said as she jailed Griffin for six months for the possession of the cannabis and imposed a six month suspended sentence, plus a €1,000 fine for the possession of the Xanax tablets.


Kevin O’Hanrahan, clinical psychologist, HSEWorking life: HSE clinical psychologist Kevin O’Hanrahan

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