Inspector Martin Canny told Cork District Court that the charges against the defendant, Gerard Mullins, were that he had cocaine at his home in Connolly Park, Ballyphehane, Cork on November 8, 2020, and that he was in possession of the cocaine for the purpose of sale or supply to others.
Defense barrister Pat Horan said: ‘This is a very unusual case. He is 61 years old and he has no previous convictions.
“The genesis of this is that her son was taken with a significant amount of drugs. Her son is in the UK and cannot come back. He is under threat here.
“The damage has been done [to Gerard Mullins’ property] in June of last year. Fortunately, that was the last time his house was visited.
“His son owed money to third parties. They put it [Gerard Mullins] under pressure to pay her son’s debt.
“On the advice of gardaí, he installed CCTV outside his house after his van was damaged.
“He paid a large sum to third parties. This [having cocaine] is something he did out of desperation.
“He did it to keep the wolves away. Her son also repaid some of the money.
“He had to live with people who came to his house. Since June 2021, there have been no incidents.
“His health is precarious. He takes a lot of medication. He has significant mortgage arrears. He did it to accelerate the debt [accrued by his son].”
Judge Marian O’Leary fined Gerard Mullins €300 and gave him 12 months to pay the fine. “It’s because of the attenuation.”