Electrician charged for transporting €1.75m in cocaine ‘from A to B’

Electrician charged for transporting €1.75m in cocaine ‘from A to B’

By Tom Tuite

AN ELECTRICIAN charged over a €1.75m cocaine seizure in Clondalkin, Dublin was pressured to transport the drugs “from A to B”, a court has heard.

Karl Lawlor, 38, of Newlands Manor Drive, Clondalkin was granted bail on Monday.

Gardai arrested him after they stopped a vehicle at St Cuthbert’s Road on Friday, Dublin District Court heard.

He was held at a local garda station under Section Two of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act 1996 and charged on Sunday with possessing the drugs for sale or supply on April 15.

He appeared before district court president Judge Paul Kelly on Monday.

Garda Mark Walsh told the court the accused “made no reply” when charged. He objected to bail citing the seriousness of the case.

He alleged the vehicle was searched resulting in a find of 25 kilos of suspected cocaine with an estimated street value of €1.75 million.

There were two wrapped packs each containing 10 single bars, and five bars of cocaine in shopping bags and a cardboard box, in the backseat.

Cross-examined by defence solicitor Kate McGhee, the garda agreed the accused has lived at the same address for about five years and he was in full-time employment.

Garda Walsh also accepted the accused was from a law-abiding and supportive family, and Mr Lawlor was “shocked about the situation he finds himself in”.

The officer also acknowledged that there were no flights risk concerns.

However, bail conditions would not alleviate his concerns.

The court heard the seizure has yet to be sent for forensic analysis.

The garda accepted that it was the case that the accused was allegedly under pressure when “delivering the drugs from A to B”.

The officer agreed the accused was “forced to take possession” of them but he added that it was not the case that he had just received them and was caught straight away.

Visibly upset, Mr Lawlor, wearing a T-shirt, tracksuit trousers and runners, did not address the court.

Pleading for bail, his solicitor argued that there was no issue that her client, a father of two, would evade justice.

Judge Kelly granted bail in his bond of €500 with an approved €10,000 independent surety.

He ordered Mr Lawlor to notify gardai of any address change, sign on daily at a garda station, remain contactable on his mobile phone at all times, surrender his passport and not apply for new travel documentation, and remain sober and drug-free.

Gardai must obtain directions from the DPP. Mr Lawlor was ordered to appear at Blanchardstown District Court on July 12.


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