A Vietnamese man who claimed he had been trafficked into Ireland on the back of a truck, had flown here using false documents, a court has heard.
Tran Hoa and Cao Son Nguyen, both aged 28, have pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis and cultivating cannabis without a licence at Clash Industrial Estate on October 21st, 2013.
Judge Thomas E. O’Donnell further adjourned sentencing to the December sitting of Tralee Circuit Criminal Court.
About 30 gardaí surrounded a building in the Clash Industrial Estate in Tralee when detectives from the Drugs Unit raided the building, acting on confidential information.
Tran Hoa and Cao Son Nguyen made their escape, on a prepared escape route, through a series of ladders, onto the roof.
Cao Son Nguyen cooperated with gardai but Tran Hoa jumped, breaking his leg in the process.
Gardaí had to use cutting equipment to gain access to the building.
Inside they found cannabis herb and plants, at various stages of maturity, worth an estimated €1.4m.
Defending barrister David Sutton for Cao Son, said he was at the lower level of culpability within the group and was sleeping near the toilet in the building.
Tran Hoa’s barrister, Anthony Sammon, pointed out that his client had no trappings of wealth, even though the unit was “pumping out” three million euro worth of cannabis a year.
Judge O’Donnell adjourned sentencing until December 3rd.
He said if he’s satisfied certain circumstances exist, he will consider a lesser jail term than the mandatory 10-year sentence.