Back to Judge former Garda Martin Nolan, again, 2 Million euros of Drugs, 4 years; out in 12 months, Laughable?

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Dublin tile shop owner who accepted delivery of cannabis worth €2m is jailed for four years

When questioned, John Hanley (45) took full responsibility for the drugs and said no one else in the shop knew anything about them

John Hanley at the Criminal Courts of Justice
John Hanley at the Criminal Courts of Justice — © Paddy Cummins – PCPhoto.ie

11th October 2022

A tile shop owner who accepted a delivery of just under €2 million worth of cannabis has been jailed for four years.

John Hanley (45) told gardaí he was targeted to take in the drugs delivery because he owned a legitimate business and that he did so out of fear for himself and his family, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard on Tuesday.

Hanley, with an address at Balruddery Wood, Balrothery, Balbriggan, Co Dublin pleaded guilty to one count of knowingly permitting the importation of drugs at his premises at Malahide Road, Coolock on October 10, 2020.

Oisin Clarke BL, prosecuting, told the court that Hanley was the co-owner of a tile shop in Coolock.

On the day in question, a pallet containing €1.94 million worth of cannabis was delivered to the store and signed for by a shop worker.

Gardaí then raided the premises and the drugs were seized.

When questioned by gardaí, Hanley took full responsibility for the drugs and said no one else in the shop knew anything about them.

He said he had been threatened by some individuals to hold the drugs and that he did so because he was fearful for his safety and the safety of his family.

He has two previous convictions for minor offences.

John Hanley at the Criminal Courts of Justice
John Hanley at the Criminal Courts of Justice — © Paddy Cummins – PCPhoto.ie

James Dwyer SC, defending, said his client suffered from depression and anxiety and had a history of cannabis use, which led to him being targeted. The court heard Hanley received no award for holding the drugs.

Sentencing him, Judge Martin Nolan noted Hanley had cooperated with gardaí, made full admissions and pleaded guilty to the charge.

He noted the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) had opted to deal with Hanley by way of an importation charge, rather than a drug dealing charge, which the judge said would have merited a sentence of six to eight years.

He handed down a four year sentence.

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