Sunday 24 March 2019

Brian O'Donnell arrives back at Gorse Hill following High Court appearance

Brian O'Donnell pictured returning to his home in Gorse Hill in,Killiney Dublin this evening. Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Brian O'Donnell pictured returning to his home in Gorse Hill in,Killiney Dublin this evening. Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Brian O'Donnell pictured returning to his home in Gorse Hill in,Killiney Dublin this evening. Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Brian O'Donnell and his son, Blake, pictured arriving at the Four Courts for a High Court hearing
Brian O Donnell and his son, Blake, pictured arriving at the Four Courts for a High Court hearing
Brian O'Donnell arrives at the Court with his Son Blake.

Tim Healy

Brian O'Donnell arrived back his Gorse Hill shortly after 6.30 this evening .

He waved briefly to members of the press but did not make any comment.

The solicitor was ushered into the residence by members of the New Land League .

An unidentified woman who opened the gates said "there's no privacy" as the car drove through.

Mr O'Donnell was returning from a High Court hearing where the judge had reserved his judgement.

Earlier, Mr O'Donnell claimed he and his wife have paid €700m to banks worldwide but Bank of Ireland is the only one to have "persecuted us for five years".

Thursday 05 March 2015. Gorse Hill. Brian O'Donnell leaves his house this morning in KIlliney on the way to court.
Thursday 05 March 2015. Gorse Hill. Brian O'Donnell leaves his house this morning in KIlliney on the way to court.
Thursday 05 March 2015. Gorse Hill. Brian O'Donnell leaves his house this morning in KIlliney on the way to court.
Thursday 05 March 2015. Gorse Hill. Brian O'Donnell leaves his house this morning in KIlliney on the way to court.

Mr O'Donnell made the claim in opposing the bank's High Court application requiring him and his wife, Dr Mary Patricia O'Donnell, to peacefully give up possession of the former family home, Gorse Hill, Killiney, Dublin, to a receiver appointed by the bank in relation to a €71.5m debt which was partly secured on the house.

After hearing arguments from both sides, Mr Justice Brian McGovern reserved his decision.

Read more here: Brian O'Donnell and wife Mary Patricia flew in from England last weekend, bank tells High Court 

Mr O'Donnell, in opposing the bank's application for an injunction, also said while he knew businessman Jerry Beades, of the New Land League "as a friend", he had not authorised any statements made by its members over the last few days.

He said a car parked on front of the gates of Gorse Hill was to prevent people rushing into the property as occurred on Wednesday.

He denied he was doing anything to frustrate receiver Tom Kavanagh who was due to take possession last Monday.

He was speaking in response to submissions by Cian Ferriter SC, for the bank, who said he was entitled to the injunction because the O'Donnells were simply engaged in "a tactical manoeuvre" to frustrate lawful efforts to take possession having "barricaded themselves and holding out a spurious right to remain there".

Read more here: TV3's Vincent Browne tells Jerry Beades to 'shut up' as he describes Gorse Hill as a 'bog standard house' 

03/03/15 Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin. Pic Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
03/03/15 Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin. Pic Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
John Martin from the New Land League speaking to media at the gates of Gorse Hill in Killiney, Co Dublin
Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin. Pic Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Gorse Hill, the home of solicitor, Brian O'Donnell in Killiney. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin.
Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin. Pic Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin. Pic Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin. Pic Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin. Pic Stephen Collins/Collins Photos
Brian O'Donnell's house 'Gorse Hill' on the Vico road, Killiney,Co Dublin Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos

The O'Donnell's true family home is in Surrey, England, where they have lived for the last three years and from where they "flew in at the weekend" to move into Gorse Hill, counsel said. 

Given that the "barricades had now been breached" and people were going into the property, his clients feared the security of the premises was in jeopardy. The granting of an injunction for possession was also absolutely urgent for the upholding of the integrity of the administration of justice and the rule of law.

Read more here: Farce and drama as Brian O’Donnell complains of Gorse Hill ‘circus’ 

Mr O'Donnell, in response, denied they had barricaded themselves in but had to block the doors because on three occasions "there was a rush of people through the gates running around the garden."

There were 65 members of the press outside and on one occasion,  TV3 broadcaster Vincent Browne "led a posse through when the gates were opened".  

Asked by the judge if he told Mr Beades to desist from putting out press statements on his behalf, particularly as he must know as a solicitor how unwise it was to do so while proceedings were underway, Mr O'Donnell replied: "No, I do not, I am not with every person who is a member of an organisation, they have a right to free speech and I have no control".

The judge told him nobody has a right to try to influence court procedures or influence the rule of law. Mr O'Donnell said: "I am not doing that".

Mr O'Donnell said he and his wife were concerned about their safety as a security company called AOC Security Solutions had been brought in by the receiver.

Earlier, Mr O'Donnell said the bank has known about the right of residency enjoyed by him and his wife at Gorse Hill for the last 15 years and particularly in the last three years since this litigation began but it (bank) had not made any application to the court in relation to it. 

The court heard the bank disputes that right of residency claim.

Mr O'Donnell said there was no urgency in granting possession as the O'Donnells' continued occupation was to the benefit of all concerned.

He said said the bank has never told him how much of their debt had been recovered from the sale of 11 properties in Ireland, the UK and France, which were also part of the securities.  

It was "absolute nonsense" to say there was an urgency about getting Gorse Hill.  "We do not know how much they have got from the assets they have taken because they have not told us anything".

These assets include two properties overlooking Lough Corrib in Galway and three buildings in Merrion Square, Dublin, from which there was an annual rent of between €600,000 and €700,000, he said. A premises known as the Sanctuary Building in London had also been sold for €32m and the bank got that money.

"We have paid €700m back to banks worldwide and the only bank we have had a problem with is this bank which has persecuted us for five years".

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