A man has been arrested in Cork with €20,000 worth of cannabis - that he said he was going to make into soup.
Eddy Osagie, 50, a Nigerian national, was pulled over by Garda in Cork and found to be carrying a kilo of a paste that later turned out to be cannabis. He insisted that it was not the regular cannabis found in Ireland and that he was going to make it into soup.
"Two packets were found in cereal boxes in the car," said Garda William Hosford. "Osagie was arrested and made certain admissions. He said he had it for medical needs and used to use it for making soup." Hosford had initially stopped the car as he could smell the cannabis.
"What the guards found was a type of paste," said Elizabeth O'Connell, defence senior counsel for Mr Osagie, who has lived in Ireland since 2003. "It was unusual. It was quite a squashed together package. It was not the normal cannabis. He was very forthcoming. It is an African concoction. It was mixed with beans. He used to put it in food."
Ms O'Connell said that while Mr Osagie had previously smoked some of the cannabis, it was not something of which he had a history. He had no prior convictions in his time in Ireland.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin sentenced Mr Osagie to two years in jail, with one year suspended. "It was very knowingly done and with a curious sense of entitlement that he had it for medicine slash food value slash 'this is what I do'," he said in sentencing.
"He had no previous convictions for crimes of this sort. Had he arrived with a urinalysis which this case was crying out for - and he had that option - that he and others would have been acutely aware to him and others that it would progress his case."
As he was transporting the cannabis in a car at the time of his arrest, the defendant was also banned from driving for four years.
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