“This was a slightly unusual case”, state solicitor Frank Nyhan said at the outset of the appeal by William Delaney, of Bay 5, Spring Lane halting site, Blackpool, Cork.
Delaney, who is in his mid-20s, had no previous drugs convictions but got a four-month jail term in Cork District Court for cocaine possession. He did not deny he was in possession of cocaine but appealed the severity of the sentence at Cork Circuit Appeals Court yesterday.
Garda Graham Desmond said William Delaney was arrested at Thomas Davis St, Blackpool, Cork, at 2am on March 18, 2015, for questioning over a burglary.
During a routine search of a jacket, which Delaney had when gardaí first saw him on that morning, a quantity of white powder was found in the pocket. The powder was later tested and it proved to be cocaine.
He was not convicted on the more serious supply charge. However, for the charge of simple possession he got a four-month jail term.
Alan O’Dwyer, defending, said the offence dated back 22 months and Delaney had not come to adverse garda attention in the meantime.
Judge Ó Donnabháin asked the garda if he accepted that Delaney had changed since this crime was detected. Garda Desmond accepted the accused had changed and said, “he has not come to our attention”.
The judge agreed to suspend the four-month sentence originally imposed at Cork District Court.