Crash led to £225k cocaine bust, court is told
A road accident in west Belfast led to the seizure of suspected cocaine with a potential street value of up to £225,000, a court heard.
Police said the drugs were recovered at a house during follow-up searches after a cutting agent was allegedly found in learner driver Robert Scott's car last Friday. Scott, of Dhu Varren Park in the city, appeared before Belfast Magistrates Court charged with possessing cocaine with intent to supply.
The 34-year-old is also accused of having a white powder for encouraging or assisting in the supply of drugs, having no motor insurance and driving without supervision. Scott was arrested after the Renault Laguna was involved in a collision on the Springfield Road.
Opposing his application for bail, a detective claimed it could create a risk of further offences or obstruction with the course of justice. She also told the court police called to the scene of the accident discovered Scott held only a provisional driving licence.
Due to his demeanour, the vehicle was searched and a white substance located, the judge was told.
Subsequent searches at the property in the Edenderry area uncovered the suspected cocaine.
"It's estimated that, depending on the quality of the drugs, the suspected cocaine (value) could be anything in the region of £30,000 to £225,000," the detective said.
She disclosed that Scott made no comment during interviews.
"Police are actively seeking to establish further details of any supply network," she told the court. Defence counsel Sean O'Hare argued that no drugs were found on his client or in his system, adding that he gave police accurate details at the scene of the collision.
The barrister also pointed out that a woman arrested as part of the same enquiry was later released. But refusing bail, District Judge Fiona Bagnall said: "I'm quite satisfied the defendant should be remanded in custody."
Scott is due back in court by video-link in four weeks time.