O'Donnell could have case to Human Rights court 'in six months'
Solicitor Brian O'Donnell is hoping that his case to win back Gorse Hill from the banks could come before the European Court of Human Rights 'within six months to a year.'
Mr O'Donnell's supporter, Jerry Beades of the self-styled New Land League, told the Irish Independent that Mr O'Donnell is 'busily working away' on his legal action.
He explained that the process to take a case to the ECHR is a relatively straightforward one: the legal papers must be taken out of their folders and placed in a cardboard box which will then be dealt with by ECHR officials.
Mr Beades said that the family and their supporters have been sleeping "very well" after the receiver finally took control of Gorse Hill and following Mr O'Donnell's appearance before the Bank of Ireland AGM, where he had physically tossed the keys of the property to bank CEO, Richie Boucher.
"We slept very well, we were all exhausted," he said.
He said the O'Donnells have been staying with friends and have no plans to return to their home in the UK at present.
He revealed that the family, in conjunction with the New Land League have been taking legal advice from solicitors in Scotland and Germany, whom he claimed are 'appalled' at how the O'Donnells have been treated by the Irish courts.
Mr Beades also revealed that the O'Donnells are confident that they will be successful at the ECHR because they are basing their case on an Icelandic precedent some years ago.
Mr Beades said a man who had lost against the banks in an Icelandic court had actually received compensation from the ECHR because they ruled that the judge who had heard the case should have recused herself.
Mr Beades said the O'Donnells will be relying on this precedent to argue that Judge Brian McGovern should have recused himself from hearing their case in the Commercial Court.
Last July, Blake O'Donnell, the son of Brian O'Donnell, asked Justice McGovern to stand down from hearing the case, claiming the judge's wife was previously party to legal proceedings against the receiver, Tom Kavanagh and that Mr Justice McGovern and his wife had a mortgage and other borrowings with the bank.
However, Mr Justice McGovern replied he was not going to recuse himself, saying he had no involvement with his wife's partnership which had the dispute and all borrowings and mortgage with the bank had been paid off.