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Question

230. Deputy Jonathan O'Brien asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the number of persons currently serving custodial or suspended sentences for drug possession; and the total prison population. [13557/16]

Answer

Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I am advised by the Irish Prison Service that on the 30 April 2016 there were 3,756 prisoners in custody across the prison system. Of this 381 or 10% were serving sentences for drugs related offences. It is not possible to provide the number of person on suspended sentences for drugs offences.
A full breakdown of the offences, taken from the most recent snapshot of the prison population conducted on 30th April 2016, is set out in the following table. The figures include the length of the sentence in each case.

Data from 30th April 2016 <3 Mths 3 to <6 Mths 6 to <12 Mths 1 to <2 Yrs 2 to <3 Yrs 3 to <5 Yrs 5 to <10 Yrs 10+ Yrs Total
Cultivation of Cannabis Plants and Opium Poppy 0 0 1 1 3 7 3 0 15
Possession for sale or supply drugs valued €13,000.00 or more 0 0 0 2 5 20 38 26 91
Possession of drugs for the purpose of sale or supply 0 6 15 26 26 44 66 32 215
Unlawful possession of Drug(s) 2 3 0 4 11 15 13 6 54
Unlawful supply/offer to supply controlled drug 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1
Unlawfully importing or exporting controlled drugs 0 0 0 2 0 2 1 0 5
Total 2 9 16 35 45 89 121 64 381