The court heard Kerins was “in the throes of drugs addiction” and was helping to pay off a €7,500 drug debt at the time of his arrest
Daniel Kerins (26) of Brookview Close, Tallaght, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of cocaine for sale or supply at St Ronan's Crescent, Clondalkin, on November 25, 2019. He has three previous convictions for possession of drugs.
Detective Garda James Doolin told Aideen Collard BL, prosecuting, that on foot of confidential information, gardaí put in place a surveillance operation in the Donomore area of Tallaght on the date in question.
Det Gda Doolin said Kerins was observed getting into a taxi in the area and travelling to St Ronan's Crescent. Kerins got out of the taxi carrying a package and got into another car with his co-accused.
Kerins and his co-accused exited a moment later with the co-accused now in possession of the package. Both were arrested and the package was found to contain cocaine.
The total value of the cocaine was €69,993.
Det Gda Doolin said Kerins' role was to transport the drugs in order to pay off a drug debt, while his co-accused's role was to break down and sell the drugs.
The detective agreed with James Dwyer SC, defending, that his client was not the target of garda intelligence. He agreed that the other man's role was slightly higher and more trusted.
The court heard Kerins was “in the throes of drugs addiction” and was helping to pay off a €7,500 drug debt through his involvement. He has attended residential treatment and made significant progress in rehabilitating himself, the court heard.
Mr Dwyer submitted that his client had been assaulted “in a very serious way” arising from this matter, but that he did not report this to gardaí.
He has not reoffended since the date of the offence.
Judge Melanie Greally said she was satisfied Kerins had been subject to a significant amount of pressure to act as a courier on the day in question. She noted he had a lot of difficulties arising from his childhood and has demonstrated a “high level of commitment” in rehabilitating himself and extracting himself from his former life.
She handed down a three year sentence and suspended it on a number of conditions, including that Kerins remain under the supervision of the Probation Service for two years.
Kerins thanked the judge after the sentence was handed down, telling her: “I won't let you down.”