Saturday 18 November 2017

Dail lorry protester ordered to stop island roadworks

Aoife Finneran

THE property developer who drove a truck to the gates of Leinster House has been ordered to stop the unauthorised construction of a road on Achill Island.

Joe McNamara (41) hit the headlines last year when he drove a cement lorry with the words "toxic bank" and "Anglo" to the gates of Leinster House. He was acquitted of charges of criminal damage and dangerous driving over the incident.

Yesterday, following an application by Mayo County Council, Mr McNamara gave an undertaking he would comply with a court order requiring him to cease the construction work in Achill.

The council alleged that Mr McNamara was asked by its planning officers last Friday to stop the construction works in what it calls an area of "high scenic value" on Achill Island.

Mr McNamara, with addresses at Achill Head Hotel, Pollagh, Keel, Achill Island and Salthill, Co Galway, allegedly continued with the works, prompting the council to secure a High Court order on Saturday requiring him to desist.

Pat Butler, SC for the council, said the works had continued despite the court order. Yesterday, following the developer's undertaking to the court, Mr Justice Roderick Murphy was told that the council intended to bring further proceedings against Mr McNamara.

In an affidavit last Saturday to support the council's application, Iain Douglas, a senior planner with the council, said he went to the site last Friday and found four excavators working on what appeared to be a roadway at Slievemore mountain.

Irish Independent

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