09 Aug 2022

Longford man has cocaine possession charge struck out

Longford man has cocaine possession charge struck out

Longford man has cocaine possession charge struck out

A defendant accused of possessing cocaine had the charges against him struck out at Longford District Court. Ronan O'Reilly of Smear Hill, Aughnacliffe, Longford was charged in connection with an incident on August 18, 2020.

Garda O'Brien told the court that on that date he was on patrol in Longford town. At midnight he observed three men drinking on the steps of St Mel’s Cathedral. As he approached, one of the men ran off, and the other two remained.

Garda O'Brien said there were indications of drugs and alcohol consumption, including empty bottles and cans of alcohol and two empty packets one of which contained drugs.

The officer searched the two males and found a ziploc bag containing white powder on Mr O'Reilly.

Gda O'Brien told the court the defendant denied it was his even though it was in the front pocket of the jacket he was wearing.

The two men were directed to leave the area, but whereas the second male did leave Mr O'Reilly's level of intoxication prevented him from doing so.

The defendant was arrested and a fixed charge penalty notice for public intoxication was issued, which Mr O'Reilly paid.

Garda O'Brien sent the white powder to the forensic science laboratory for analysis, which returned a positive reading for cocaine.

On examining the evidence Judge Owens had an issue with the labelling of the drugs noting it did not correspond with the label on the certificate of analysis provided by the forensic science laboratory.

As this raised an issue regarding the chain of custody the matter was struck out.

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