herald

Wednesday 22 May 2019

Pair to go on trial after €250k cocaine haul seized by gardai

Arvydas Steponkus (pictured) and Thomas O'Boyle face trial
Arvydas Steponkus (pictured) and Thomas O'Boyle face trial
Thomas O'Boyle

Two men charged with drugs offences following the seizure of an estimated €250,000 of cocaine have been sent for trial.

Thomas O'Boyle (32) and Arvydas Steponkus (45) were arrested following an operation by drugs and organised crime detectives.

Mr O'Boyle, of Beechwood Court, Old Bundoran Road, Sligo, and Mr Steponkus, of Lindisfarne Grove, Clondalkin, are charged with possession of cocaine as well as having the drug for the purposes of sale or supply.

The seizure of the drugs took place at Cruiserath Road in Ballycoolin on February 24, 2018, the court heard.

The two men are also facing a charge under Section 15a of the Misuse of Drugs Act, where the alleged value of the drugs is greater than €13,000.

Phone

Mr O'Boyle is further charged with possession of a mobile phone which was for use in connection with drug trafficking offences.

A State solicitor said that the book of evidence was ready and had been served on the men, who go forward for trial to the present sittings of Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.

Judge Paula Murphy gave the men the formal alibi caution. Defence solicitors Philip Hannon and Simon Fleming, as well as two junior counsel and two senior counsel, were assigned on free legal aid.

The men were remanded on bail to appear before the circuit court later this month.

As part of their bail conditions, both men must sign on at their local garda stations, and they have surrendered their passports.

Judge Murphy further ordered that a video copy of interviews which gardai conducted with the men be handed over to their legal teams.

The accused have not yet indicated a plea to the charges.

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