Woman jailed for two years for transporting heroin at the behest of her then partner

Gary Ibbotson 05 Aug 2022

A woman who was transporting heroin between her home and another Dublin address at the behest of her then partner has been handed a two-year prison sentence.

Suzanne Shannon (38) pleaded guilty to one count of being in possession of heroin with an estimated value of €69,608, at her home in Avondale House on North Cumberland Street on June 23, 2017.

Imposing sentence at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court last Monday (25th) Judge Orla Crowe said that Shannon has a “chronic drugs problem” and a history of offending.

She noted however that the defendant was acting at the behest of her then partner, who had taken responsibility for the drugs.

She handed Shannon a two and half year sentence, with the final six months suspended on strict conditions.

Shannon has 46 previous convictions, mostly for theft, and is currently in custody in relation to this case.

Emmet Nolan BL defending, outlined the background to three incidents which had taken place since Shannon entered custody in May.

Mr Nolan said these included being found to be in possession of tablets when entering custody.

He said the defendant was a very vulnerable individual, who had engaged with support services and hopes to attend a residential treatment programme.

Mr Nolan said Shannon had been “under the influence” of her then partner, but was fully co-operative with gardai.

Judge Crowe said the court takes a “dim view” of the defendant’s possession of tablets two days after being remanded in custody. She said this must be considered to be an aggravating factor.

Judge Crowe also noted that the Probation Service classed the defendant at high risk of re-offending due to the instability in her life. However, they have also concluded that they can support her.

Judge Crowe said it is accepted that the defendant had been doing well before she came under the influence of a person more involved with drugs at the time. Shannon’s then partner has taken responsibility for the drugs.

In relation to mitigating factors, Shannon had co-operated fully with gardai, entered an early guilty plea and provided clean urine samples since entering custody.

Judge Crowe imposed a headline sentence of three years, which she reduced to two and a half years with the final six months suspended on strict conditions.

She also ordered that Shannon receive credit for time in custody on this case.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court was previously told that Shannon was storing the drugs at her home on behalf of her then partner and would bring it to his address.

Her former partner pleaded guilty to a charge of possession of drugs at this address and he was previously sentenced to three years imprisonment.

Gardai raided his property following a surveillance operation and Shannon was among the people there at the time.

As a result of this search, gardai went to Shannon’s address where they found heroin with a value of €69,608.

Shannon made full admissions and said that her involvement had been at the behest of her partner. She told gardai she agreed to transport the drugs in return for being given small amounts of heroin for her own use.

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