The quantity of a drug found during a police raid in Dunnmurry was more than Belfast Health Trust needs in a year, Lisburn Court heard on Monday.
The statement was made during the case of six men and a woman accused of serious drug charges.
Martin McNally, 33, from Alina Gardens in Dunmurry, Stephen Smith, 34, from Redpole Avenue in Lisburn, Darren Frederick Morgan, 35, from Jubilee Place in Lisburn, Neil Smith, 36, from Edgewater in Lisburn, Ross MacKay, 28, from Blenheim Drive in Newtownards, John Faulkener Meneice, 65, from Whitewell Road in Belfast and Colleen Muckian, 42, from Fairyknowe Park in Newtownabbey, appeared at Lisburn Magistrates Court on Monday (February 16).
The group faced charges of assisting in the commission of offences, namely the possession of an illegal drug.
Meneice, Mackay, Smith, Morgan, Smith, McNally and Muckian were all charged with two counts of assisting in the commission of offences after being accused of being in possession of 25kg of Benzocaine, a cutting agent used in the drugs trade.
In addition, the defendants were charged with a further two counts of assisting in the commission of offences after being accused of being in possession of 12.5kg of Benzocaine.
Morgan, McNally and Smith (Stephen) were also charged with two counts of assisting in the commission of offences after being accused of being in possession of 25kg of another cutting agent, namely Mannitol.
A preliminary enquiry was held on Monday when the court heard that during a police raid of a property in Dunmurry, said to be the home of Martin McNally, on August 17, 2010, a box was found to contain 25kg of Benzocaine.
“This was found in a package addressed to Darren Morgan/Stephen Smith from an address in China,” explained the prosecution.
“This amount of Benzocaine is more than the Belfast Health Trust need in the course of a year.”
Another box, also found at the same property, and addressed to Stephen Smith. had also been posted from China and was found to contain 25kg of Benzocaine.
An additional 12.5kg and 25kg of another cutting agent, namely Mannitol, was also discovered, addressed to a fictitious company, Whitewell Kennells on the Whitewell Road in Newtownabbey.
The prosecution said there was a prima facie case to answer based on the evidence. There were no contrary submissions by the defence and none of the defendants responded when the charges were put to them.
District Judge Rosie Watters remanded the defendants to Craigavon Crown Court for arraignment on March 24.