Prosecutors ‘can reveal details of John Gilligan’s past during trial’
The 67-year-old, from Dublin, is accused of possessing and attempting to remove criminal property.
Prosecutors can give details of John Gilligan’s past during his trial for possession of and attempting to remove criminal property, a judge said.
The Irishman, 67, from Greenforth Crescent in Dublin, was stopped at Belfast International Airport in Co Antrim last year with 22,280 euro (£19,240) in cash as he was about to board a flight to Alicante in Spain.
He was questioned about an anti-insomnia prescribed medication which is “prevalent” in the Irish drugs market.
Gilligan had a piece of paper with the name of the drug printed on it but said it was for his personal use.
He said the money was intended to rent a house in Spain and denied planning to smuggle the Zopiclone drug, barrister Robin Steer told a court.
The accused also said he had a heart condition.
Details of his past were outlined at a magistrates’ court in Coleraine where Mr Gilligan is due to stand trial later.
Mr Steer summarised the accused’s defence as: “It is a coincidence that this particular type of drug is relevant within the drugs scene.”
He added: “It is a mere coincidence that I am bringing this money out in cash and going to an area where Zopiclone is cheaper and widely available.”
And he said the drugs were sold for 20 euro (£17) for 14.