Money launderer Lorna Palmer released from prison after less than five months
20th September 2022
A woman who was given an 18-month jail sentence in May after being caught with almost €100,000 of cash from crime was granted temporary release less than five months after entering the jail system.
Convicted money launderer Lorna Palmer (35) can be returned to jail if she breaks the terms of her reviewable temporary release.
Palmer was spotted partying with friends at a pub in her native Tallaght last weekend, with some local sources left surprised that she was out of prison already.
It can be revealed that Palmer was released from the Dóchas Centre for female prisoners in the middle of last month after being granted reviewable temporary release.
“As part of her release conditions, she must sign on at a garda station everyday and sign on at the prison once a week,” a prison source said.
“Her temporary release can be reviewed at any stage but it is important to note that she met the criteria for this type of release as she was an enhanced prisoner who did not commit a violent offence and is deemed to be low risk of re-offending as well as having a job,” the source added.
When contacted, a spokesperson for the Irish Prison Services said they do not comment on individual prisoners.
Palmer had been in custody since late March of this year after pleading guilty to the charge last December.
With standard remission of her sentence, Palmer would not have been due for release until next May.
She was found to be in possession of nearly €100,000, which was the proceeds of criminal conduct, when gardaí searched her Tallaght home in April, 2017, Dublin Circuit Court heard.
When gardaí asked her about envelopes containing around €700 and €2,000, that were found in a money box at her home, she said she did not know why people were posting money through the door.
The court heard that Palmer’s partner was in custody at the time of the seizure, having been convicted of an offence of possession of drugs for sale or supply.
Her partner is Kinahan cartel gangster Barry Fowler, who was jailed for six years in July for supplying drugs shortly after being released from prison for another drugs offence.
Fowler (37) of Millbrook Lawns, Tallaght, Dublin, pleaded guilty to being in possession of €134,000 worth of cannabis on May 24 last year.
Fowler is one of the country’s most notorious gangsters and he was previously convicted of being in possession of drugs and a submachine gun, and sentenced to seven and a half years in prison.
He finished that sentence shortly before the 2021 bust happened and has close links to the Kinahan-aligned Paul Rice gang in Tallaght.
In July, the couple lost more than €500,000 in cash and property. Judge Alex Owens said in the High Court that Fowler and his partner Palmer had “been living high on the hog of criminal enterprise”.
As a result of the case taken by the Criminal Assets Bureau (Cab), Palmer lost the battle to keep the house described as “her last refuge”.
The judge ruled that the property in Co Wexford, in Palmer’s name, was bought with the proceeds of crime, while Fowler dropped his opposition to have €99,000 in cash seized by Cab
Judge Owens said the pair were “awash with cash” and the evidence in court involved “vast sums of money”.