Money seized in Limerick drugs raid is forfeited
A JUDGE has ordered that more than €2,000 in cash which was seized during a drugs search at a house in the city last year should be forfeited to the state.
At Limerick Court, Maria Treacy made a Police Property Application seeking the return of the money, which was seized at her home at Castle Park, Moyross on May 7, 2011.
Detective Garda Declan O’Halloran said the cash - totalling €2,120 - was seized from a wardrobe in Ms Treacy’s bedroom during the search.
He said cannabis worth €2,889.60 was also recovered in the kitchen during the search along with self-sealing plastic bags and a weighing-scales.
Judge Eugene O’Kelly was told Ms Treacy’s partner, who denied the money was his, was subsequently convicted of drugs charges relating to the seizure.
In her evidence, the applicant said the money belonged to her and not her partner.
She told the court she had borrowed the cash from her partner’s mother and that it was her “spending money” for a holiday in Spain.
“She loaned me the money because she knew I was going to get compensation from a claim,” she said adding that she repaid the money earlier this year.
Ms Treacy claimed she had shown gardai her flight tickets but Det Garda O’Halloran said he could not recall this happening.
Ms Treacy told Insp John Deasy she did not know there were drugs in the house but she said she was aware her partner was using cannabis at the time.
In her evidence, Sheila Birmingham said she gave €2,000 in cash to Ms Keane after she took out a credit union loan.
“I knew she was going on holidays and I knew she was getting compensation,” she said after explaining that she would “only have spent it (herself) on the kids” otherwise.
Rejecting the application, Judge O’Kelly said he was “not satisfied the money had been borrowed from the credit union for the purpose of funding a holiday in Spain”.
He added that Ms Treacy and her partner had given different accounts to gardai as to how the money was raised and he said it was “not conceivable” that Ms Treacy was unaware that her partner had cannabis in their home.
The judge said he was ordering the forfeiture of the cash to the state.
However, he placed a two-week stay on the order in the event of an appeal.
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