Sunday 20 October 2019

Farmer told to remove sheep from brother's land or face jail

'The farmer has pleaded guilty to breaching the barring order' (stock photo)
'The farmer has pleaded guilty to breaching the barring order' (stock photo)

Gordon Deegan

A judge has warned a farmer he will go to jail if by today he doesn't remove 14 ewes and their lambs from a field owned by his brother.

At Ennis District Court, Judge Patrick Durcan told the 51-year-old Co Clare farmer in relation to the sheep: "I don't care where they go - if they are not gone, you are going to jail."

He told him: "You must have every ewe and lamb removed from the lands. If they are not removed, you are going down to Limerick prison."

Judge Durcan told the man that he must also have the ownership cards of the 29 cattle currently in the field at Gort District Court today. He told the farmer that if he did not, he would be revoking the man's bail and send him to prison.

The man was before the court after breaching a barring order concerning his brother by entering his brother's property on March 21. Because the case relates to a domestic violence order, the names of the parties cannot be disclosed.

The farmer has pleaded guilty to breaching the barring order and Sgt Aiden Lonergan, of Ennis garda station, said an undertaking had been given in court two weeks ago that all animals would be removed by the farmer within seven days.

Garda Lorraine Higgins told the court that all animals were still in situ yesterday. She said she spoke to the farmer before court and "I don't believe he has any place to put any of these animals in the near future".

Solicitor for the farmer John Casey said his client had complied with the parts of the order where his client had undertaken not to go anywhere near the land.

Mr Casey said this was the man's brother's main worry, and that a named third party had been looking after the animals.

Garda Andrew Monahan told the court that the farmer required a removal cert for the animals, stating that the original difficulty was that the farmer didn't have a removal cert to move the livestock on to the lands in the first place.

In evidence, the farmer told of his efforts to secure alternative lands for the animals at three locations.

Judge Durcan also ordered that a Department of Agriculture official be in court in Gort to deal with the ownership certs. He said: "Let's put this on a proper track."

Irish Independent

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