Man appears in court following discovery of cannabis factory

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A Limavady man was refused bail when he appeared before Londonderry Magistrate’s Court charged in connection with the cultivation of cannabis.

Thomas Eoghan Brolly (25), whose address was given as Coolessan Walk, Limavady, came before the court charged in connection with the seizure of cannabis plants worth £400,000.

The Magistrate’s Court as told that the cultivation of the plants had been conducted at an address in the Foreglen Road area of Claudy village, 10 miles outside Londonderry.

On hearing the evidence Brolly was refused bail by Deputy District Judge, Laura Ivers.

Brolly was charged with cultivating cannabis, being concerned in the supply of cannabis and possessing the Class B Drug with intent to supply and simple possession of cannabis on October 23, last year.

The Magistrate’s Court heard that 750 cannabis plants were seized at the property, and that they had an estimated street value of between £350,000 and £400,000.

Brolly allegedly handed himself into the police station the following day and claimed the cannabis factory was his and that he had cultivated the plants.

The court was also told he defendant had since retracted this statement.

An investigating officer said bail was opposed for fear that Brolly would commit further offences or breach any bail conditions set.

Solicitor Paddy MacDermott, defending, said the application for bail was made on the basis that there had been a delay in the case.

He said that another person has now been charged in connection with the drugs and it was unlikely the case would be ready for trial until Christmas at the earliest.

Mr MacDermott told the court Brolly is now making ‘strenuous efforts to deal with his drug and alcohol issues and has been granted compassionate bail to attend counselling sessions.

He urged the court to release the defendant to allow him to address his difficulties.

The solicitor said his client had been used by others in relation to the cannabis factory and claimed the strength of the evidence against him wasn’t the strongest.

Upon hearing the evidence Deputy District Judge Ivers refused to release Brolly on bail.

However, she did agree to Brolly’s release on three specific dates in order to attend counselling sessions.

She stipulated that the 25-year-old must be collected and returned to prison by his mother after attending the sessions.

Brolly will appear in court again via videolink on September 21.