Two men charged after massive cannabis seizure

Michael Connolly pictured at Galway Courthouse yesterday.

Michael Connolly pictured at Galway Courthouse yesterday.

Two men have been charged in connection with the seizure of €250,000 worth of herbal cannabis in Oranmore earlier this week.

The major drugs seizure was part of an intelligence-led operation involving the Garda National Drugs Unit, the Galway Drugs Unit and the Revenue’s Customs Service.

Michael Connolly (45 ) with an address at Doon East, Roscahill, Co Galway, and Gerard Mooney (49 ) with an address at Ballyconlaught, Headford, Co Galway, were brought in custody before Judge Mary Fahy at Galway District Court yesterday.

The men are charged with possession of cannabis, and possession of cannabis with intent to sell or otherwise supply to others at a location in Oranmore on March 22, 2011, contrary to Section 3 and 15 of the Misuse of Drugs Act.

Garda Barry Walshe and Garda PJ Noone gave evidence in court of arrest, charge, and caution. The two accused men were arrested and detained under the provisions of Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking ) Act 1996 at Galway Garda Station.

Inspector Sean Glynn told the court that directions from the Director of Public Prosecutions could take some time as a garda inquiry was still underway. He then made an application for both men to be remanded in custody.

Defence solicitor for Connolly, Adrian MacLynn, said that an application for bail would not be made at this time. Mooney’s solicitor, Ian Foley, initially indicated that an application for bail would be made; however, following State objections he then informed the court that his client would consent to a further remand in custody.

Judge Fahy deferred the bail application in relation to Mooney and remanded both accused men in custody by consent to Harristown District Court sitting tomorrow.

The operation involved a search being carried out on two vehicles on Tuesday morning in the car park of a business premises at Oranmore. During the course of the search 20kgs of herbal cannabis, approximately valued at €250,000, were seized. The drugs were contained in a holdall bag which had earlier been imported through Dublin Port from Belgium and had been under surveillance while being transferred to Galway.


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