Thursday 22 March 2018

Pensioner back home after being forced to sleep in his car

Gordon Deegan

A 73-YEAR-OLD pensioner forced to sleep in a car after being made homeless by his nephew was back in the family home last night.

At Ennis Circuit Court yesterday, Paul Cleary was ordered to leave the home and hand back the keys to his uncle, John Mulkerrins Jnr.

"I am very glad to be back here," Mr Mulkerrins said last night.

Since being made homeless in January after Mr Cleary locked him out and changed the locks, Mr Mulkerrins -- who suffers from a heart condition and diabetes -- had been sleeping in a car and at a local B&B.

"I don't think an elderly man should be kept out of a home he has lived in all his life," Judge Donagh McDonagh said earlier yesterday.

The judge granted an interim injunction restraining Mr Cleary from occupying the home at 62 Marian Avenue, Ennis and from excluding Mr Mulkerrins from the house.

Counsel for Mr Mulkerrins, Lorcan Connolly, had told the court Mr Mulkerrins had lived at the home for 55 years.

Mr Connolly said that Mr Cleary secured title to the home after accompanying Mr Mulkerrins's father, the late John Mulkerrins Snr -- then aged 96 -- to a solicitor's office in Ennis in January 2008 where Mr Mulkerrins Snr signed over the house to Mr Cleary for no consideration.

"This was done without the knowledge of Mr Cleary's mother, Mary Cleary, and Mr Mulkerrins Jnr," Mr Connolly said.

Before moving into the home in January, Mr Cleary, who also has an address at Shanaway East, Dunsallagh, Miltown Malbay, mortgaged the house for €216,000.

He now owes €239,000, being €29,000 in arrears, and Smart Mortgages Ltd is seeking repossession of the home.

Mr Connolly said that a 2009 probate document had valued the house at €170,000.

"Mrs Cleary was entitled to half of her brother's estate and what Mr Cleary has done is to prevent his mother and Mr Mulkerrins from having any interest in Mr Mulkerrins Snr's estate," Judge McDonagh said.

He adjourned the case until next Friday at Ennis Circuit Court.

Irish Independent

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