Northern Ireland

Cocaine press 'found in Coleraine man's car boot'

Cocaine pressing equipment was discovered in the boot of a Coleraine man's car, the High Court has heard.

Prosecutors said the component parts and moulds could have been used to re-press hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of the drug.

Ryan Glass, 36, of Hawthorn Place in the town, faces a charge of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs over the find.

He claimed the equipment had been in his back garden for two years and he was taking it to the scrap yard.

Bail was refused due to the continuing police investigations, with officers said to be still looking for another potential suspect.

Another two men and a woman have also been charged as part of the probe.

Crown counsel Kate McKay said Mr Glass was first arrested in Coleraine on 31 January.

She said three different moulds allegedly used to re-press different amounts of cocaine were discovered, along with hydraulic parts normally found in garages.

Mr Glass was released but detained again last week after forensic tests appeared to contradict his claims.

Mrs McKay said: "As part of the applicant's defence he said the press had been situated in his back garden for about two years.

"The Forensic Science Agency said it would have been impossible for any residue of cocaine to remain on the moulds having been exposed in that way to the weather."

'Junk pile'

Andrew Moriarty, defending, said the press and moulds were part of a junk pile his partner had asked him to get rid of.

He also argued that his client's lifestyle was not that of someone associated with drug dealing.

"It's not the case that any drugs or any stashes of money were found in his house," he said.

But refusing Mr Glass's application, the judge described the alleged offence as being "of grave seriousness".

Mr Justice Treacy said: "I'm not persuaded this is an appropriate case to release this applicant on bail, especially because the investigation is still at a very early stage."