A stash of cannabis worth almost €40,000 was seized by gardaí in Midleton and now a young woman from Youghal has been given a four-year suspended jail term.
Shannon Lewis Purdy of Woodlands Grove, Youghal, pleaded guilty to a charge of possessing cannabis with a street value exceeding €13,000 on June 8 2018 at Knockgriffin, Midleton, County Cork.
The charge carried a mandatory minimum jail sentence of ten years unless there were exceptional circumstances. Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said that in this case: “It would be wrong to consider a ten-year sentence because of exceptional circumstances including the circumstances in which she accepted responsibility for the drugs and pleaded guilty which enables me to consider a non-custodial sentence.”
James O’Mahony senior counsel said there were five people in the car when gardaí searched it and found the drugs but it was Lewis Purdy who admitted responsibility for the drugs.
Detective Garda Rachel McGrath said gardaí were operating a routine checkpoint at 11.45pm on June 8, 2018 when the car driven by the defendant was stopped.
Two bags of cannabis were found in the car with a total street value of €39,892. The defendant told gardaí she was collecting the cannabis on behalf of someone else and was being paid with cannabis for her own use. She was not addicted to drugs and she had no previous convictions.
Det. Garda McGrath said the only concern of the gardaí was in relation to people with whom the defendant was associating.
Mr O’Mahony SC said the accused was not acting in her own interests when she made the admission of guilt in relation to the drugs even though she was one of five people in the car at the time. Mr O’Mahony added: “She has disassociated herself from others. She has not come to the attention of gardaí since.”