herald

Thursday 8 December 2016

'Squatters' are still living at northside site, court is told

OCCUPATION

squat
squat

A NUMBER of people are still occupying a premises in Grangegorman, Dublin, which was the scene of an incident in March involving alleged squatters and workers sent in by a receiver to take over the buildings, the High Court heard.

Receiver Luke Charleton is now expected to make an application seeking the committal to prison for contempt of court orders against those still in occupation.

Last March, the court ordered the properties at Lower Grangegorman and North Brunwick Street be vacated by last Monday so that Mr Charleton, who was appointed by NAMA, could sell them to meet an unpaid debt of €21.9m owed by businessman Paschal Conroy.

Three men - Stephen Bedford, James Sutherland and Gréum Ná Hearadh - had appeared in court to oppose the receiver's application.

But following a hearing, Mr Justice Paul Gilligan ordered that the three, and all others with notice of the orders, vacate the buildings by May 4.

The judge was yesterday told by the receiver's solicitor Graham O'Doherty that there were still people in the property.

The solicitor also said Mr Sutherland had lodged an appeal against the High Court's March order that the properties be vacated by May 4. That case is listed for May 14 but a stay on that order pending the outcome of the appeal had not been obtained, he said.

Mr Justice Gilligan said as there was no stay, the order he made in March is valid. He also said the previous stay of more than a month on the execution on that order until Monday seemed "more than fair".

Mr O'Doherty said he would be bringing a further application arising out of the alleged failure to vacate.

The judge said he would first have to apply to the court for permission to bring such an application and that would provide an opportunity over the next two or three days for negotiations to take place.

Since they moved in, the occupants had established a garden, an art gallery, cafe, and a circus workshop.

Prior to yesterday's hearing Paul Gillet of the Grangegorman Community Collective claimed the alleged squatters have the backing of the community.

He said he believes they can hold onto the premises because of the work they've done there.

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