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Lurgan woman to appeal jail sentence over litany of drugs and traffic offenses – Armagh I




A Lurgan woman is to appeal a four-month prison sentence she received for a litany of drug and motoring offences.

The case had been adjourned for sentencing as the 22-year-old was told to abstain from drugs and alcohol.

However, the court heard that she admitted to using cannabis daily during an interview with the probation service.

Aine O’Neill, of Brookvale Walk, appeared for sentencing on four separate indictments at Craigavon ​​Magistrates’ Court.

The defendant was charged with Class A possession, two counts of Class B possession, two counts of Class C possession, Class C possession with intent to supply, driving while unfit, of dangerous driving, two counts of disorderly conduct, two counts of obstructing the police, incorrect registration marks, defective tire, operating a vehicle without insurance and using a copy of a false instrument.

These offenses occurred between July 8, 2020 and April 20, 2021.

Defense attorney Conor Lunny said it was a “tough sentencing exercise”.

However, District Judge Bernie Kelly said, “Maybe from your perspective, not mine.”

The court heard that in preparation for a pre-sentence report, O’Neill admitted to using cannabis on a daily basis.

Mr Lunny said his client had been ‘honest to the point’. He commented that the defendant had “tried to wean herself off cannabis, but she hasn’t been successful yet.”

He added: “For someone trying to get off drugs, prison might not be the best environment.”

District Judge Kelly said, “Ms. O’Neill, the purpose of delaying a defendant’s sentence is to allow him not only to demonstrate his ability to change his life choices, but also to take the necessary steps and to stick to it.

“My instructions were simple. I asked you to stay away from drugs and alcohol and you didn’t.

She remarked that not sending O’Neill to jail would send the message that there were “no consequences.”

The defendant was sentenced to four months in prison for these offences.

Additionally, O’Neill was banned from driving for a period of 12 months and ordered to pay a fine of £150, along with a £15 fee for the offender.

Mr Lunny informed the court of his client’s wish to appeal the conviction.

O’Neill was given his own bail of £500 with conditions not to take non-prescribed drugs and not to consume alcohol or enter licensed premises.




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