Three to be sentenced on drug charges over ‘N-bomb’ death

Alex Ryan’s death inquest heard teenager died after taking drug at house party in Cork

Three people are due to be sentenced on Wednesday for drug offences arising from a Garda investigation into the death of a young man who died after ingesting the drug N-bomb in Cork last January.

Harry Clifton (29) with an address at St Finbarr's Place, Proby's Quay, Cork, was originally charged nine counts, but yesterday was arraigned on four counts. He leaded guilty to all four of them.

Clifton pleaded guilty to having a synthetic drug of the 2C family called 251 NBOMe, colloquially known as N-bomb, for the purpose of sale or supply. He also pleaded guilty to having MDM for sale or supply and to simple possession of cannabis and DMT at Proby’s Quay in Cork on January 19th.

Ruairí Maher (22 ) of Ballycurrane, Thurles, Co Tipperary, and Jessica O'Connor (20) of Rosebank House, Ballyhar, Killarney, CoKerry, both pleaded guilty to conspiring with another to possess a controlled drug, N-bomb, for the purpose of sale or supply in Cork city on January 18th.

The three were charged following an investigation into the death of Alex Ryan (18) from Liscahane, Millstreet, Co Cork who died at Cork University Hospital on January 23rd after becoming ill at the house party at St Patrick's Terrace on Green Street in Greenmount.

Earlier this year, Cork City Coroner’s Court heard that Mr Ryan - who had been on a life support at CUH - died as a result of consuming N-bomb at the house party on January 19th.

Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margot Bolster told the inquest, which was adjourned until December 8th, that Mr Ryan died from hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy due to cardiac arrest after ingesting a psychedelic drug.

On Monday, prosecution barrister Pearse Sreenan BL confirmed to Judge Sean O Donnabháin at Cork Circuit Criminal Court that the case would be ready to go to sentencing on Wednesday.

Defence counsel for the three accused also indicated that they would be ready for sentencing then.

Judge Ó Donnabháin remanded Clifton and O’Connor on continuing bail yesterday until Wednesday. Maher had previously been remanded on bail to Wednesday, having pleaded guilty at an earlier day to the sole charge against him.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times