CELEBRITY chef Rachel Allen has described her drug-dealing son Joshua as the “kindest guy you will ever meet” and the “gentlest soul” but insisted: “I don’t condone what he did.”
The top cook, who doted over her 21-year-old convicted drug dealer son, also said he was “such a sweetheart” and that he loves animals.
TV chef Allen, who will be a special guest presenter on RTE’s Today Show every Tuesday this month, also admitted she was reluctant to speak about her troubled son and explained she wanted to “protect him”.
She revealed: “There is loads I would love to say.
“He is trying to learn the right way. He is the kindest guy you will ever meet. He is the gentlest soul you will ever meet.
“He loves animals and he is such a sweetheart but then I fear that if I say that I will get another barrage of comments thrown at me. Isn’t that awful?
“I am not condoning what was done. I don’t want people to think I am saying what happened is OK.”
The 49-year-old mum-of-three, who spoke to The Sunday Independent, also talked about the constant worry of being a parent.
She also opened up about seeing her son’s crimes in the headlines and said it left her feeling “horrible”.
Allen explained: “It was horrible really. There is no other way to put it. You just feel so exposed.
“I feel so bad for my children that it [her career] is a factor in their lives and growing up. I do. I feel really bad about that.”
In February 2020, Joshua was handed down a 30-month prison sentence – with half of it suspended – after pleading guilty to two drugs charges at Ballymaloe Cookery School in Shanagarry, Co Cork, on August 30 2018.
These charges included possession of cannabis for sale or supply to others where the amount of the drug exceeded €13,000.
Joshua – who is Rachel’s eldest son – also pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine on the same occasion and to possession of cannabis on September 5 2018 in Ballinamona.
The 15 month sentence imposed by Judge Sean O’Donnabhain was backdated to November 8, 2019.
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Last June he was given reviewable temporary release from prison after serving six months behind bars.
But the young man ran into more trouble after being arrested for alleged drug-driving last August but he was released without chare.
He also crashed a luxury Range Rover in September, he was arrested for alleged drug driving at the time and a file has been sent to the DPP.