Ballina drug dealer given suspended sentence at Donegal District Court

A drug dealer was today given a six-month jail sentence suspended for two years at Donegal District Court.

Judge Kevin Kilrane told Thomas Skeffington, who was found with 247 grammes of herbal cannabis worth almost €4.000 at his home that he was not a small cog in a chain of drugs distribution where “very unfortunate” people were way down the line.

The judge said the 26-year-old, with an address in Ballina, was a middle-man who supplied poison on the streets.

Donegal District Court heard that first-time offender Skeffington, a native of Tubbercurry who lived in Lord Edward Street, Ballina, admitted to gardai selling cannabis for €50 but at first denied ownership of the herbal cannabis found in his garden on January 7, 2011.

Detective Garda Sinead Caheny told the court that Skeffington, who had daughters aged one and two and a stepson aged seven, feared for his personal safety and the safety of his family. She added she is certain money is owed by him.

Defence solicitor Rory O’Brien said Skeffington got into serious debt to individuals, and his safety is in jeopardy.”

Judge Kilrane observed that Skeffington, who admitted the offence, got in with a criminal gang and was “caught red-handed.”