‘Significant drug dealer’ in court

Court
Court

A “significant drug dealer” from Dunmurry pleaded guilty to 20 offences relating to drugs, money laundering and possessing a gun and ammunition on Wednesday May 20.

Kevin Murphy (30) had been due to go on trial in two weeks but at Craigavon Crown Court last week, defence QC James Gallagher asked for the charges to be put to him again.

It was then that Murphy, from Colinmill, admitted a total of 24 charges including having a firearm under suspicious circumstances, possessing class B cannabis with intent to supply, handling a stolen Ford Transit van and “conspiring with unknown persons to supply a class A drug.”

He also admitted that he supplied class A cocaine on 4 April and that on 19 and 20 May 2013, he possessed class A cocaine, herbal cannabis and cannabis resin, both class B along with class C tramadol, a morphine based painkiller, with intent to supply.

As well as the drugs charges Murphy pleaded guilty to possessing £14,000 in cash which was criminal property, converted criminal property by paying a mortgage, possessed £1,000 in counterfeit currency, handled a total of 30 stolen tyres and conspired with a woman to produce cannabis.

Four other charges of simple possession of the drugs were left on the books.

Previous courts have heard claims he was involved in the drug dealing and money laundering plot “under duress,” claims his defence team say are bolstered by the fact that his co-accused brother Tony was “dragged out of a chip shop in Poleglass and shot in the knee and ankle” six days after the pair were first charged May 2013.

Tony Murphy (24), from Springbank Close, also in Dunmurry was due before the court last Thursday for sentencing after he pleaded guilty to possessing herbal cannabis and cannabis resin with intent to supply and a further charge that he handled stolen camera equipment, all alleged to have occurred on 19 May.

His sentencing however was adjourned to 5 June when the brothers will be sentenced together. It is understood the charges faced by the brothers are in connection with the seizure of a quantity of suspected cocaine and herbal cannabis with an estimated street value of £500,000 following searches at properties in Poleglass and Crumlin.

While some drugs were uncovered in Kevin Murphy’s home, the majority were found in a lockup garage along with a firearm and a quantity of top of the range tyres which Kevin Murphy admitted to buying at £35 per tyre to sell at £120 each.

Adjourning passing sentence until pre-sentence reports have been completed, Judge Patrick Lynch QC remanded Kevin Murphy back into custody.