Draperstown man accused of possessing £75,000 of cannabis released on bail

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A Draperstown man has appeared in court accused of possessing £75,000 of cannabis.

Karl Moran, of High Street in the town, is charged with cultivating cannabis and possessing the class B drug with intent to supply on November 4.

He is further charged with simple possession of cannabis and dishonestly using electricity.

An investigating officer told Derry Magistrates Court he believed he could connect the 35-year-old to the charges.

Objecting to bail, the detective from the Organised Crime Branch, said police have concerns Moran will interfere with the ongoing investigation.

He said police are currently attempting to identify other suspects and Moran’s home address is currently a crime scene.

The officer added there are also concerns the 35-year-old will re-offend.

He told the court the defendant refused to speak to police.

The officer alleged that during the search police found harvested drugs worth £25,000 to £50,000 and growing plants worth approximately £36,000.

He told the court police would fear if released on bail would owe money to other parties in the ‘organised crime grouping’.

A defence solicitor told the court his client has a bail address with his brother, who also lives in High Street.

He added Moran only has one previous motoring conviction and he could be released on bail with stringent conditions.

District Judge Barney McElholm said there are always fear of further offences in cases like this.

He said the risk of interfering with the ongoing investigation concerns him more.

However, he granted bail ‘on balance’.

Moran was released on his own bail of £1,000 with a surety of £750 to reside with his brother.

The 35-year-old is banned from possessing or using a mobile phone and must abide by a curfew.

Moran will also be electronically tagged and must report daily to police.

He will appear at Magherafelt court again on December 2.