Judge criticises lack of treatment for addicts in Cork jail

A PRISONER facing a long sentence for dealing heroin who carried heroin, cannabis and 180 anti-depressant tablets into prison inside his body was given an additional year in jail yesterday.

The judge said it was regrettable Cork Prison did not have a methadone treatment programme for addicts serving sentences.

Defence barrister Ronan Barnes said desperation drove Timothy O’Shea of Lakelands Crescent, Mahon, Cork, to carry €3,700 worth of heroin weighing 28 grammes, more than €500 worth of cannabis resin and Diazepam tablets.

Mr Barnes said O’Shea, 30, was facing a long dark tunnel on February 26 as he commenced an eight-year sentence and that he was aware Cork Prison did not have a methadone programme.

Judge Patrick J Moran said at Cork Circuit Criminal Court: “You were going to Cork prison, aware that there are not the facilities that there should be for heroin addicts, namely methadone treatment. It is regrettable Cork Prison does not have that facility. I say that, bearing in mind all the young people on drugs who come before me, I would have thought the authorities would bring Cork Prison up to the level of other prisons in the state.”

O’Shea pleaded guilty to conveying the drugs to Cork prison and having the drugs for the purpose of selling or otherwise supplying to others.

Mr Barnes asked the judge to take account of the fact that he was now drug-free and doing a number of educational courses in the prison.

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