15 Aug 2022

Three men in custody over Kildalton cannabis farm

GARDAI from Thomastown are continuing to investigate the one of the biggest cannabis finds in the history of the State.

GARDAI from Thomastown are continuing to investigate the one of the biggest cannabis finds in the history of the State.

Three men appeared before Youghal District Court last Friday charged in relation to the drug seizure that occured at a double warehouse in Kildalton, Piltown last Wednesday evening (May 2). The three men had been detained in garda stations at Kilkenny city and Thomastown following the massive drugs find in Piltown, estimated at €3.5 million.

Guotai Lin, (57), Lin Lin (40) and Cho Long He (35) of no fixed abode appeared before Judge Terence Finn. All three accused, who were assisted in court by an interpreter, were charged with possession of cannabis, possession of cannabis for sale or supply and cultivation of cannabis at a warehouse in Kildalton, Piltown on May 2.

Judge Finn did not grant bail application on the grounds that he was not satisfied of the identification of the accused men, that there was no record of how they had entered the country, that they were not registered with the Garda National Bureau and that they were caught red handed at the scene. Judge Finn remanded all three in custody to appear at Cashel District Court on Thursday (May 10).

Cannabis with an estimated street value of €3.5 million, some harvested and much of it still in pots were found in a warehouse close to Kildalton College in Piltown Wednesday evening in a planned raid following a surveillance operation. The operation was carried out by members of the Garda National Drugs Unit and Gardai from the Kilkenny Division and Regional Support Units

History of cannabis cultivation in South Kilkenny

Although an operation of this scale has never been seen by gardai in Kilkenny before another cannabis farm was unearthed justed a few miles away in nearby Mooncoin in November 2010.

In that case (which is in no way linked to last week’s drugs find) a Vietnamese man was used as ‘a mule’ and confined to staying inside a house in Mooncoin to tend to cannabis plants, valued at almost €140,000. He was convicted in Feburary and ordered to return to Vietnam.

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