Drugs accused refused bail at Derry Crown Court

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Derry Crown Court was told that a 32-year-old man originally from Derry is the 'principal' in a crime gang that tried to import more than £2 million worth of drugs into the North.

During a bail application for Declan Gallagher who has an address in the Greater Manchester area a police officer told the court that they believed the defendant was involved in six separate operations designed to import cocaine and cannabis.

The police officer outlined the six incidents which took place in Derry, Larne, Lisburn and Belfast.

He said that various amounts of drugs ranging from £7,000 worth of cocaine through to £618,000 worth of cannabis and cocaine were seized and people arrested.

The police officer outlined the six incidents which took place in Derry, Larne, Lisburn and Belfast.

He said that various amounts of drugs ranging from £7,000 worth of cocaine through to £618,000 worth of cannabis and cocaine were seized and people arrested.

He said that police believed Gallagher was involved in all six operations and that through phone analysis, surveillance and other evidence they could link him to the drug operations.

He also told the court that police had evidence of Gallagher being involved in meetings in Lisburn and Manchester with others involved in the drug importations and said he was the 'principal in an organised crime gang' that could have had up to 30 members at any one time.

He said each time police seized drugs Gallagher would regroup and try again.

He opposed bail on the grounds that Gallagher may re-offend he also told the court that the defendant had contacts in the Republic, Spain and Amsterdam and there was a possibility he would not turn up for his trial.

Mr. MacDermott said his client had been in custody for 14 months and was it was likely to be some time before the case would go to trial.

As regards the flight risk the solicitor said that with European arrest warrants people could be extradited very quickly from Europe.

Refusing bail Judge Babbington said that while the arrest warrants existed the problem was finding people who fled.

He said that Gallagher was accused of supplying drugs to the North as a whole not just the Derry area.
The case was adjourned until January 15.