Ice cream man had knuckleduster 'for his own protection'
An ice cream man had a knuckleduster, claw hammer and a baseball bat for "his own protection", a court has heard.
Gareth Cahill (38) was found with the weapons after gardai stopped and searched his car in west Dublin.
Judge David McHugh imposed a four-month suspended sentence.
The defendant, of Ballyneety Road, Ballyfermot, admitted possession of a baseball bat, knuckleduster and a claw hammer before Blanchardstown District Court.
The incident took place at Coldcut Road, Clondalkin, on August 6 last year.
Garda Derek McGuinness said he was on mobile patrol on Coldcut Road at 11.45pm when he stopped Cahill driving a Renault Megane.
Gda McGuinness said he spoke to the defendant and saw that Cahill had a baseball bat hidden under clothing on the passenger seat.
The car was searched by gardai. A claw hammer was found in the boot and a knuckleduster was uncovered in the centre console.
The court heard that Cahill had 29 previous convictions but had not been in trouble since 2011.
Defence solicitor Anarine McAllister said Cahill had co-operated fully with gardai, and had provided them with a voluntary interview.
Ms McAllister said that Cahill had the items "for his own protection".
This was not an excuse but an explanation for having the items, she added.
Ms McAllister told the court that Cahill was single and had a young child.
He had no history with drink or drugs, she said.
Ms McAllister also told the court that Cahill had set up a business selling ice cream. He'd had a prosperous summer but his business was a seasonal one, she added.
Judge McHugh suspended the sentence for a period of 18 months.
The judge told Cahill that if he had difficulties or concerns about his personal safety then he should contact An Garda Siochana.
Judge McHugh also ordered the destruction of the three weapons.