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Saturday 16 December 2017

Pregnant neighbour from hell (23) evicted after all-night parties

Zoe Byrne. Photo: Collins Courts
Zoe Byrne. Photo: Collins Courts

A 23-year-old pregnant woman who made life intolerable for her neighbours is being kicked out of her local authority home on the direction of a judge.

Zoe Byrne's behaviour was "nothing short of a disgrace", Judge Jacqueline Linnane told the Circuit Civil Court.

On one occasion, armed gardai were called to Ms Byrne's home to remove a man who had no right to be there.

Homeless

Judge Linnane granted Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council a possession order that will leave Ms Byrne homeless by Christmas.

She said Ms Byrne had made herself homeless by hosting noisy, all-night parties.

She said the constant din of shouting and loud music kept neighbours awake at night.

Ms Byrne also allowed rubbish to build up, attracting an infestation of rats. Because of this, one of her neighbours had been unable to allow her children out to play.

Within 10 days of Ms Byrne moving into her apartment in Pearse Street, Sallynoggin, Co Dublin, the first complaints arrived at the council offices. Two of Ms Byrne's neighbours, one of whom suffered from MS and had four children to look after, said life became intolerable when she moved in.

Ms Byrne had previously appeared before the district court where she undertook to change her ways.

Liam O'Donovan, from the council's housing department, said the changes were not forthcoming and Ms Byrne received visits and written warnings about her behaviour.

Judge Linnane told Liam O'Connell, counsel for the council, that it was clear there had been a litany of disturbances caused by Ms Byrne's parties.

Ms Byrne had appealed the decision of the district court to grant the county council a possession order after she breached the undertaking to change her ways.

Drugs

Marc Murphy, counsel for Ms Byrne, told the court the appeal had been brought on the grounds that the possession order was disproportionate.

He said the consequences of a dismissal of the appeal would be devastating for Ms Byrne and would be making her homeless.

He asked for an adjournment to allow her to show that she had changed for the better.

"A sad feature of this case is that it has taken a long time for the penny to drop," he said.

Ms Byrne told the court she had a drugs and drinks problem but had mended her ways.

Refusing Byrne's appeal and refusing to grant her a stay before the possession order takes effect, Judge Linnane said the local authority had done everything it could to help Ms Byrne.

"I have no doubt there are many other people urgently awaiting housing who would jump at the opportunity for accommodation as rented to Ms Byrne, and who would be quite willing to get on with their neighbours," she said.

Judge Linnane said the apartment rented to Ms Byrne was in a relatively modern building of a lovely design and with balconies and a garden that Ms Byrne had rendered useless to her neighbours.

The judge refused to grant Ms Byrne a stay and made an order for costs against her.

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