A 52-year-old HSE care worker was found storing more than 50,000 head shop tablets in a vegetable garden, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court has heard.
David Whelan of Grangegorman Village, Grangegorman was in financial difficulties and was paid €200 a week to store the tablets along with nearly a kilogram of cocaine. The total value of the drugs was €337,767.
He pleaded guilty to possession of 53,633, formerly legal, BZP tablets, worth about €5 each and 994 grams of cocaine worth €69,587 at his home on Decemeber 18, 2009. Judge Tony Hunt adjourned the case for a probation report and remanded Whelan on continuing bail until June when a full plea in mitigation will be heard.
Garda Stephen O’Keefe told prosecuting counsel, Mr Tony McGillicuddy BL, that gardai went to the house with a search warrant and met Whelan there. He told them immediately that the drugs were in the garden and showed them to a poly tunnel- a tunnel covered in polythene used for growing vegetables.
The drugs were stashed underneath in two plastic bags. Another stash of cocaine was found in an upstairs bedroom in a vacuum packed bag.
During garda custody, he wrote gardaí a note admitting knowledge of the drugs. He said none of his family or friends were involved but that he feared for their lives if he revealed who owned the stash.
He said he was having money trouble and stored them for the extra income.
Defence counsel, Mr Eanna Mulloy SC, said Whelan was a care worker in a halfway house run by the HSE. He said his whole family worked in the health service and that he had no previous convictions. Mr Mulloy added his client has spent Christmas in prison because he could not afford bail.
Thursday, April 14, 2011 - 06:29 PM