26 Jun 2022

Tipperary heroin addict 'spent over €100,000 on cars and drugs in 18 months'

Tipperary heroin addict 'spent over €100,000 on cars and drugs in 18 months'

Tipperary heroin addict 'spent over €100,000 on cars and drugs in 18 months'

A man who pleaded to a litany of drug and road traffic offences at Nenagh District Court spent over €100,000 on drugs, cars and a caravan in an 18-month period, the court heard.

Roy Forde, with an address at 47 Cormack Drive, Nenagh, pleaded to 30 offences that happened between August 20, 2020, and March 21, 2022.

Among the offences were possession of heroin and cocaine, cannabis, sale and supply of drugs, drug driving, dangerous driving, no insurance, no driver’s licence, criminal damage, non-display of a tax disc and no NCT, being unlawfully at large and theft.

The court heard that Mr Forde had 121 previous convictions, including 20 for no insurance.

His solicitor, Liz McKeever, told the court that Mr Forde was in custody since mid-April 2022 on the most recent matter, the theft of two mobile phones valued at €279 from Tesco, Borrisokane road, Nenagh, on March 21. The items had not been recovered.

She said that Mr Forde was well known to the court.

“He has been a heroin addict for a long number of years. He is now on a methadone programme, which is the first stage to dealing with heroin addiction,” said Ms McKeever.

She pointed out that Mr Forde had received in excess of €100,000 in compensation in a civil case in 2020.

“He says he spent every penny on drugs, cars and a caravan,” she said.

Mr Forde’s life was “chaotic; there’s no other way to explain it. He had got sentences before and, unfortunately, had reoffended,” said Ms McKeever.

She said that the focus of his attention at the moment was his daughter’s confirmation next month.

“He is lucky he hasn’t been in a serious accident given his driving under the influence, or that he hasn’t injured or killed people,” she said.

“It is difficult to make a mitigating plea when there is such a litany of offences,” said the solicitor.

Ms McKeever said Mr Forde knew he can never drive again and that he should never be behind the wheel again.

Sgt Regina McCarthy said the gardaí were objecting to free legal aid on the basis that Mr Forde had received over €100,000 in compensation in a civil case.

“The State says he has the funds,” she said.

Mr Forde told Judge MacGrath that he had spent the money on drugs and cars over an 18-month period.

Sgt McCarthy asked that Mr Forde be ordered to produce a bank statement covering the relevant period.

Judge MacGrath remanded Mr Forde in custody for a pre-sentencing report to this Friday, ordering him to “do a list of what you spent the money on”.

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