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Pensioner couple were 'rough-handled' out of house by bailiffs, court told

Evicted pensioners Martin and Violet Coyne were "rough-handled" by bailiffs who forced them out of their home with no shoes on their feet, a court has been told.

The couple were left waiting from 10am for their court case which eventually commenced at noon, Mr Coyne (71) and Mrs Coyne (61) were told late yesterday afternoon by Circuit Civil Court Judge Raymond Fullam to appear again on October 7 to deal with the case.

Barrister Suzanne Boylan - appearing on behalf of the couple - told the court that there was a "significant development" in the case after the sheriff's office executed an eviction order against them yesterday morning.


Judge Jacqueline Linnane last month found them in contempt of court for not abiding by court orders to vacate their rented home and disregarding a sworn undertaking to do so last month.

She had adjourned the hearing of an application committing the couple to prison until yesterday.

However, counsel for the couple and the property's receiver agreed to adjourn that hearing until October.

Ms Boylan, who appeared on a pro bono basis for the couple, claimed the sheriff had no legal basis to execute the order under the Land and Conveyancing Law Reform Act 2009 which prohibits seizure of a domestic tenancy.

"They rough-handled Mr and Mrs Coyne and left them without their possessions or clothes," she told the court.


Mrs Coyne sat in the courtroom wearing her dressing gown, nightshirt and slippers while Mr Coyne had no shoes for a time. Solicitor Stephen Byrne, acting for the property's receiver, said he had no issue with the adjournment nor with the couple's request that a third party be allowed to enter the house in Carpenterstown last night in order to retrieve their furniture and belongings.

He told Judge Fullam that the couple had failed to surrender the house despite undertakings to do so being given to the court earlier.


He said the sheriff evicted the Coynes yesterday morning and the receiver was now in possession of the property.

However, he argued that the issue of the sheriff's office executing the eviction order goes beyond the scope of the hearing.

The court had heard that Darragh Ward, the house owner and the Coynes' former landlord who had a mortgage with ACC Bank, went into receivership in 2012.

Receiver, Shane McCarthy, had sought possession in order to sell the house to reduce Ward's debt to the bank.

"I don't know what will happen next," an upset Ms Boylan added.