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cell searched Prisoner caught using mobile phone to contact family has another month added to sentence

Jamie Coughlan (41) did not have the phone for any "nefarious" reason when guards saw him using it in his cell in Wheatfield prison.

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Wheatfield Prison

Wheatfield Prison

Wheatfield Prison

A PRISON inmate caught illegally using a mobile phone to contact his family has had another month added to his sentence.

Jamie Coughlan (41) did not have the phone for any "nefarious" reason when guards saw him using it in his cell in Wheatfield prison.

Judge David McHugh gave him a one-month sentence, consecutive to the six-year jail term Coughlan is already serving.

The accused, from Phillip Street in Waterford City pleaded guilty to possession of the phone on October 27, 2020.

Garda Sergeant Walter Sweeney told Blanchardstown District Court prison officers were carrying out routine cell searches when they saw Coughlan with a phone in his hand. He handed it over when confronted.

The accused had 25 previous convictions and his sentence release date was in 2023, the court heard.

Coughlan had already suffered "significant sanctions" in prison for the offence, his lawyer said.

He had "no nefarious reason" for having the phone "other than contacting his family."

The accused had no drink or drugs issues and was waiting to get back to enhanced prisoner status within the prison.

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