A man who was arrested after drugs with an estimated value of over €5,000 were seized at a house in Athlone has been released without charge.
The 34-year-old man was arrested after a Garda raid on a house in Cherryfield Avenue on the west side of Athlone on Wednesday this week.
Local gardaí accompanied by members of the Regional Support Unit seized a quantity of heroin, cannabis resin, and cannabis herb at the house.
The seizure was made at approximately 10.15am on Wednesday [November 20]. Heroin with an estimated street value of €3,150, cannabis resin with an estimated street value of €1,500, and cannabis herb with an estimated street value of €640 were seized at the house. However the Garda Press Office pointed out that all these values are estimated and are subject to analysis of the drugs.
A number of mobile phones, weighing scales, and a quantity of cash were also seized during the raid.
A 34-year-old male was arrested at the scene and detained at Athlone Garda Station under Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking ) Act 1996. However, he was released without charge later that evening, and a file is being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions.
The planned raid was part of an ongoing operation targeting the sale and supply of controlled drugs in the Athlone area, and was carried out by local gardaí with assistance from members of the Regional Support Unit.
The news comes as Athlone Community and Voluntary Forum this week raised concerns at the increased levels of drug dealing and drug-related crime in the town.
Presenting their annual report to the Athlone Area meeting this week, members of the forum drew attention to the “number of vacant properties in Athlone being used as drug dens”, and called on the council to increase community supports to tackle the issue.
Last month, a 39-year-old man was arrested after an estimated €240,000 worth of cannabis plants were seized from a house at Falty, Oldtown, Athlone in Co Roscommon. That seizure was part of Operation Nitrogen, an operation by the Garda National Drug Unit targeting the cultivation of cannabis, which in the same week seized a total of €2.1 million worth of cannabis plants at locations across the country.