Heroin dealing "is like taking out a gun", says Judge

Heroin dealing "is like taking out a gun", says Judge

A DUBLIN youth, who was caught heroin dealing, has been given a last chance to avoid a custodial sentence after a judge told him his offence was the same as “taking out a gun”.

The 17-year-old boy pleaded guilty at the Dublin Children's Court to possessing six packets of heroin for the purpose of sale or supply at Sean Heuston Bridge on January 14 last.

Judge John O'Connor told the youth who appeared at the Dublin Children's Court that “selling something like that is tantamount to taking out a gun, particularly for a young person”.

He said he was taking the case very seriously and that the boy, who has no prior criminal convictions, could be facing a three month sentence. The youth had not engaged with the Probation Service.

The teen, who was accompanied to court by his mother, was ordered to appear again in September for sentencing. An updated probation report on him has been requested by the judge.

The court heard that the teenager had a relative who died in tragic circumstances.

Defence counsel Damian McKeone said that the Probation Service had asked for the case to be put back to allow the teenager to be referred to substance abuse counselling and training agencies and  a youth mentoring services.