Irish Open Runner-Up Paul Carr denied €36k in Drug Money

by Jeremy Olson

An Irish court has ruled against 2010 Irish Open runner-up Paul Carr in a case involving €36,000 in suspected drug money. As a result, Limerick gardai (Irish police) will keep the ill-gotten cash.

Gardai seized the money in May of 2011, when they searched a Limerick house for drugs. The gardai then confiscated the money as evidence. Carr, whose criminal record was previously clean, stepped forward and told the Limerick Circuit Criminal Court that the €36k was actually his.

After finishing second in the 2010 Irish Open, Carr experienced a €312,600 ($421,530) windfall. And the 23-year-old claimed that he didn’t have a bank account to put his money. So he gave €36k of the funds to a friend for fear that criminals might target him.

However, the Limerick Circuit Criminal Court was presented with evidence that Carr had put over €300,000 into a bank account in his name. And this was enough to convince Judge Tom O’Donnell that the seized cash was drug money, rather than part of Carr’s poker winnings. O’Donnell said he was “satisfied on the balance of probabilities” that the money “is the proceeds of crime and should be forfeited to the State”.

This legal battle may not be over because Carr claims another €244,330 in drug money is also his. There’s no word yet on if he will pursue the claim in the near future.

Carr became a minor celebrity in Ireland after finishing runner-up to Englishman James Mitchell in the Irish Open. He made an appearance on Ireland’s Late, Late Show and did some newspaper and radio interviews. But since that time, he’s yet to experience the same success on the felt. What’s more is that he was busted and fined €2,500 for driving through Limerick while high on cocaine.