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O'Mahony was contracted by the Irish Prisons Service for addiction counselling in Mountjoy prison in Dublin. Alamy Stock Photo

Prison addiction counsellor charged after drugs discovered at her home

The woman was on her way to a prison when she was stopped by gardaí in Dublin 7.

A PRISON ADDICTION counsellor has been granted bail after being charged over a drug and crime proceeds seizure in Dublin.

Dublin District Court heard that mother of two Kate O’Mahony, 35, had been on her way to a prison when gardaí stopped her car on the North Circular Road and recovered cocaine.

It was alleged more cocaine as well as cannabis, and benzodiazepines and alprazolam tablets, and more than €7,000 in cash were recovered during a follow-up search at her home yesterday.

Gardaí told The Journal the woman was arrested after gardaí stopped her car in Dublin 7 yesterday.

O’Mahony of the Clovers, Beechpark Avenue, Castleknock, Dublin 15, was charged with unlawful possession of the drugs, possessing them for sale or supply and a money laundering charge for having proceeds of crime. She has yet to enter a plea.

Garda Kylie Byrne told Judge Bryan Smyth today that the accused “made no reply” when charged.

Garda Byrne objected to bail, citing the seriousness of the case and concerns the accused would flee.

The court heard O’Mahony worked as an addiction counsellor at Merchant Quay Ireland, an outreach and support service, and also in Mountjoy Prison.

The contested bail hearing was told she was in the vicinity of the prison when her car was stopped and drugs were recovered.

Garda Byrne said her house was searched, and more drugs were found, along with €7,400 in cash.

Judge Smyth heard that the total value of the drugs recovered was about €2,000.

Cross-examined by defence solicitor Donal Quigley, the garda agreed the accused lived all her life in the Dublin 15 area, had children, and was in her current home for the past three years.

The solicitor suggested that the alleged seizure was mainly tablets, but the garda pointed out that it also included cannabis and cocaine, allegedly worth €1,000.

The garda said the cash was “scattered” in different locations in her home, including her bedroom, and money was “rolled up and some contained in cling film”.

The solicitor put it to the garda that his client let out rooms, but the officer answered that the accused had not told gardai.

Quigley also added that she worked full-time in Merchant’s Quay.

The garda agreed she had never been in trouble before and had surrendered her passport.

Pleading for bail, the solicitor argued that his client had “significant” ties to the State, the amount of drugs was low, and the matter could be dealt with at the District Court level.

Judge Smyth held that she should be granted bail in her bond of €1,000 with conditions.

He ordered O’Mahony, who did not address the court, to sign on three times a week at her local Garda station, provide gardai with a phone number and be contactable at all times, and not to apply for a duplicate passport.

Gardai need to analyse the substances and seek directions from the Director of Public Prosecutions. Judge Smyth adjourned the case until July.