A young man with previous convictions for drug dealing has been jailed for four years after gardaí caught him with nearly €100,000 worth of cannabis.
Aaron Byrne (20) of Knowth Court, Poppintree, Dublin pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession for sale or supply of the drugs on the evening of September 28, 2019.
Garda Kevin Brennan told Lisa Dempsey BL, prosecuting, that gardaí on patrol spotted Byrne and another man acting suspiciously at waste ground known locally as "Seven Pitches", near the IKEA store in north Dublin.
They approached them and saw that the men were putting cannabis into clear plastic bags. Byrne ran off but was caught by Garda Brennan.
The other man tried to get away on a small motorbike but crashed it, the court heard. This man cannot be named as he is still before the courts.
Garda Brennan agreed with James Dwyer SC, defending, that gardai do not believe the drugs belonged to his client. Byrne has a previous conviction for sale or supply of drugs.
Counsel handed in a number of testimonials on behalf of his client which stated Byrne had “a lot to offer the world”.
A letter from his mother said Byrne had got mixed up with the wrong crowd. She said he began using drugs to cope with the tragic death of his sister seven years ago.
Judge Martin Nolan said that Byrne was moving the drugs for third parties and receiving some type of reward for this. He was arrested but nothing of evidential value was said during his interviews, Judge Nolan said.
He said Byrne is a young man capable of reform with impressive reference letters on his behalf.
But he said the amount of the drugs was serious and by his own previous record Byrne knew “what he was getting into”.
He backdated the sentence to September 28 last.