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debt Carpenter forced to hold €100,000 for drug dealers avoids jail

During a search of Cahill's home, a suitcase was found with two wads of cash totalling €100,000

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A carpenter who was forced to hold €100,000 in drug money to pay off his own drug debt has been given a four year suspended sentence.

Eamon Cahill (25) of St Samsons Court, Balgriffin, Dublin pleaded guilty to possession of proceeds of criminal activity in December 2021.

Garda Detective Linda Haren told the court that on 6 November 2020, a warrant was executed at the address of Cahill. During the search of this property, a suitcase was found in the wardrobe of the master bedroom. The suitcase contained two bundles of cash, totalling €100,000.

An encrypted iPhone and a diary with handwritten notes were also seized during the search. Cahill told gardai that he “had met someone at the back of the airport and was given the money, phone and diary to hold”.

He told gardaí that “he knew the money was a result of crime but had no idea who the money was from or what it had been used for”.

Det Haren told Anne Marie Lawlor SC, defending, that Cahill was fully cooperative with gardai throughout the investigation and that he was at the lowest level on the drug crime ladder. The court heard that Cahill has no previous convictions and had never come to the attention of the gardai before this incident.

Det Haren accepted that Cahill, a qualified carpenter, had begun using drugs during the pandemic lockdown as he was not working and had built up a drug debt of €10,000. The detective agreed that Cahill was holding the cash to pay off this debt.

A probation report was submitted to the court, which stated Cahill was at low risk of reoffending and did not require supervision by the probation services.

Judge Pauline Codd said that facilitating the movement of proceeds of crime was a serious offence which assisted in criminal originations profiting with large amounts of money.

Judge Codd took the following mitigating factors into consideration, Cahill's early guilty plea, his lack of previous convictions and his full admission and cooperation with gardai throughout this investigation.

She sentenced Cahill to four years in prison but suspended it in full on condition that he remain under the supervision of probation services for four years and be of good behaviour.

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