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Thursday 2 October 2014

'We might as well be jailed' - evicted couple

Allison Bray and Sam Griffin

Published 28/08/2014 | 02:30

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Martin and Violet Coyne
The scene at the eviction in Lutrell Park
Martin and Violet Coyne

AN elderly couple were left homeless last night after they were evicted from the house they had been living in for 15 years.

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Pensioners Martin and Violet Coyne said they would have to "sleep in a van" after they were forced to vacate their home.

"I don't know what we're going to do. We'll be homeless. It's disgraceful they can treat us like this. We're still in shock," Mrs Coyne said last night.

There were tense scenes yesterday evening, after security personnel for a receiver refused to allow the couple entry to the house for over an hour.

A large crowd gathered, and gardai were also called to the scene following heated confrontations between the security personnel and those who had gathered.

Friends of the couple were eventually allowed to take some possessions, which were removed in a van, after negotiations between the couple, the receivers and the security personnel.

Mrs Coyne broke down in tears as her possessions were removed.

They will return this morning to collect the last of their possessions.

Homeless

The Coynes yesterday experienced an early-morning swoop by bailiffs at the house in Luttrell Park Drive in Carpenterstown, west Dublin.

The couple, aged 73 and 61, were forced to attend a court in their pyjamas soon after the eviction and left court in tears.

However, contempt of court proceedings, brought against them previously for not vacating the home, were adjourned.

Mr and Mrs Coyne were told by Circuit Civil Court Judge Raymond Fullam to appear again on October 7.

Their residency at the house has been the centre of long-running proceedings.

Afterwards, Mrs Coyne said the couple were not allowed to finish getting dressed and she had no choice but to appear in court wearing a dressing gown, a nightdress, tracksuit bottoms and slippers while her 71-year-old husband had to leave the house without any shoes.

"There were three at the door and two outside in the garden and they put their foot in the door and said 'we're not leaving, you have to leave'," she said.

Her husband said they "might as well have been jailed - at least I would have a roof over my head, wouldn't I?"

Barrister Suzanne Boylan, appearing for the couple, had earlier told the court that there was a "significant development" in the case after the Sheriff's office executed an eviction order against them.

"They rough-handled Mr and Mrs Coyne and left them without their possessions or clothes," she told the court.

Solicitor Stephen Byrne, acting for the property's receiver, said he had no issue with the adjournment, nor with the couple's request that a third party be allowed to enter the house in Carpenterstown last night in order to retrieve their furniture and belongings.

He told Judge Fullam that the couple had failed to surrender the house despite the fact that undertakings to do so had been given.

Counsel for the couple and the property's receiver eventually agreed to adjourn the case until October, while Mr Byrne said it had been agreed they would be able to return to collect some possessions.

Irish Independent

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