Man caught with €350k of criminal proceeds gets three-and-a-half years

By Jessica Magee

A LOCAL man caught in possession of €350,000 of criminal proceeds has been sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison.

Glen Byrne (40), of Citywest, pleaded guilty to possessing the cash at Dublin Auto Prestige Carwash on the Greenhills Road on June 24, 2017.

Dublin Criminal Courts of Justice 2 October 2016

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that the money comprised of seven bales with approximately €50,000 in each bale, wrapped in masking tape and contained in a box in a van driven by Byrne.

Passing sentence last Monday, Judge Martina Baxter said Byrne had been part of a “planned and very well-executed operation”.

She said the possession of such a large amount of criminal proceeds was “serious and reprehensible” and that Byrne had “succumbed to the temptation” of getting involved in crime.

Judge Baxter noted that the offence had not been motivated by financial duress or economic necessity and that Byrne had an impressive work history and had been a good employer.

“He had no declared drug addictions or debts and he was already a contributing member of his community when this offence occurred,” she said, remarking that Byrne had overcome a lot of difficulties in his youth to create a good life for himself and his family.

The judge suspended the final six months of the sentence, taking into account Byrne’s lack of previous convictions, his early guilty plea and the letters and testimonials submitted on his behalf.

A co-accused man, Paul Carew (41), of Saggart Court Ledge, Saggart, was jailed for eight years earlier this year for his role in this and two separate money-laundering offences.

The court heard previously that Byrne and Carew were arrested on foot of a surveillance operation that had been tackling “large organised crime” both inside and outside the State.

On the morning in question, Carew was followed by gardai leaving his home and driving to Walkinstown, where he got into a third co-accused’s van and proceeded to the Dublin Auto Prestige car wash on the Greenhills Road.

Carew was spotted taking a box containing €351,000 in cash out of one van and placing it into a van driven by Glen Byrne, whereupon all three men were arrested.

A box containing seven mini-packages of cash wrapped in grey duct tape was found in the passenger footwell of the van.

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