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Sunday 18 November 2018

Man found with cannabis was trying to pay drug debt

Sergeant Michael Ahern said that gardai were on mobile patrol at Rathfarnham Road when they stopped Raferty. (stock photo)
Sergeant Michael Ahern said that gardai were on mobile patrol at Rathfarnham Road when they stopped Raferty. (stock photo)

A young man caught with cannabis hidden in a backpack was holding the drug because he was trying to pay off a debt.

Stephen Raferty (26) had built up a debt due to his cocaine use.

He said he was no longer using drugs and this incident was a "one-off".

Judge Patricia McNamara fined Raferty €150 and sentenced him to six months in prison, which she suspended for one year.

Possession

The defendant, of The Greenlands, Castleside Drive, Rathfarnham, admitted before Tallaght District Court to possession of cannabis as well as having the drug for sale or supply.

Sergeant Michael Ahern said that gardai were on mobile patrol at Rathfarnham Road shortly after 2pm on March 11, 2017, when they stopped Raferty and searched him under the misuse of drugs act.

During the course of the search, Sgt Ahern said gardai searched the defendant's backpack and found cannabis with a street value of €910.

Raferty co-operated with gardai, and he made admissions during interview.

The defendant had no previous convictions.

Defence lawyer Stephen Montgomery said that Raferty had accumulated a drug debt due to his cocaine use and he was holding the cannabis because he was trying to pay it off.

Mr Montgomery said Raferty started dabbling in drugs when he was only 13 after he fell in with the wrong crowd. He developed a cocaine problem but was no longer taking the drug.

Mr Montgomery also said that the defendant had completed his Leaving Certificate and was working as a warehouse operative.

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