Belfast Telegraph

Mother and son to be sentenced for roles in Armagh crime gang

by Ashleigh McDonald

Five people including a mother and son were told on Tuesday that they will be sentenced next month for the roles they played in an Armagh-based criminal enterprise.

Cash amounting to around £500,000 in both sterlings and euros and several luxury watches were seized as a result of two police 'interceptions' during the summer of 2016, with five people arrested and charged with various offences.

The five co-accused appeared together at Newry Crown Court, sitting in Belfast, were a Crown prosecutor outlined their differing roles.

Darren Barry Anthony Donnelly, a 33-year old father of three from Roscavey Road in Beragh, admitted possessing criminal property on August 17, 2016 - namely £214,216 and €224,760 which was found in packages when his lorry was stopped by police.

Armagh father of three Joseph Despard, from Salters Grange Road, admitted possessing criminal property namely £10,010 on July 13, 2016, as well as possessing counterfeit currency in the form of 91 fake pound coins.

Conor James Patrick Toal - who the court heard doesn't work, doesn't claim benefits and who is supported financially by his wealthy partner - is from Mullacreevie Park in Armagh and pleaded guilty to three offences.

The 32-year old admitted transferring criminal property, namely £214,216 and €224,760, on August 17 2016, and of possessing criminal property in the form of two Rolex watches, a Tag Heuer Watch and a Breitling watch along with £4,690 on the same date. In addition, he admitted concealing criminal property, namely £79,450, on July 13, 2016.

Eugene Thomas (33) from Callan Crescent also admitted transferring criminal property, namely  £10,010, on July 13, as well as two counts of possessing criminal property. The latter two charges take the form of £103,980, a Raymond Weil watch, a Rolex Sky Dweller watch and a Rolex Cosmograph watch.

His mother, 57-year old Mary Thomas who works two jobs as a school and a hospital cleaner, admitted a single charge of concealing criminal property. This charge relates to a Rolex Sky Dweller watch and a Rolex Cosmograph watch which were found in her wardrobe during a search of her Callan Crescent house on July 13, 2016.

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