Two Cork men have been jailed after an investigation by the Cork City Divisional Drugs Squad which led to the seizure of over €80,000 worth of cannabis at a house on the outskirts of the city.
Daniel Higgins (26) from The Orchard, Church Bay, Crosshaven, was jailed for four years for conspiracy to possess €18,950 worth of cannabis for sale or supply at Rathpeacon on September 15th, 2016.
Mark Cronin (31) from Coneybeg, Rathpeacon, Old Mallow Road, was jailed for two years for possession of €87,630 worth of cannabis for sale or supply at Rathpeacon on the same date.
Det Sgt Lar O'Brien told Cork Circuit Criminal Court gardaí raided a house at Coneybeg, Rathpeacon and found 3.4 kilos of cannabis worth €68,680 on a shed roof.
Gardaí also found 947 grammes of cannabis, worth €18,950, stashed in a bag hidden in a wooded area at the back of the property, Det Sgt O’Brien told the court.
The drugs belonged to a third person, but Cronin was co-operative and admitted he was involved in delivering and distributing the drugs to others in the Cork area.
Higgins arrived at the house and, after spotting two garda cars outside, realised the house was being raided but decided to try and recover drugs stashed in the woods.
He was arrested by gardaí looking for the stash in the woods using the light on his mobile phone. He initially claimed he was out for a walk and gave a false name to gardaí.
But when he was arrested, he admitted a number of texts on his phone related to the collection of the drugs and he admitted conspiracy to possess the €18,950 drugs stash for sale or supply.
Higgins had ten customers lined up for the cannabis, hidden in the woods for him, and expected to make around €3,000 which he planned to use to support his drinking habit.
Det Sgt O’Brien said Cronin would not have had the personality to organise this type of operation and he would be surprised if he ever came before the courts for drugs offences.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said it was important to distinguish between the two defendants as Cronin had a secondary role in storing and distributing the cannabis for someone else.
A probation report on Cronin was positive and while he believed the headline sentence should be seven years, he would suspend five years in light of his co-operation.
Higgins was brazen enough to try and collect his drugs even though he knew gardaí were raiding the house, the judge said, as he sentenced him to seven years with three years suspended.