Wednesday 22 August 2018

Protestors take over home of evicted couple

A number of protesters have taken over the house that an elderly couple were evicted from last month.

Gardai arrived at Luttrell Park Drive in Carpenterstown this morning as five men had moved in to the home.

Martin (73) and Violet (61) Coyne were put out of the house they were renting on August 27.

Violet was still in her nightclothes and slippers as she was evicted. The case centres on a repossession order instigated by ACC Bank because the owner of the house went into receivership in 2012 and it wants to sell the house to reduce its debt.

Control

But at 7.30 this morning a son of the Coyne's, along with four other men, managed to regain control of the house.

The five men - claiming to represent the Land League, Meath Anti-Eviction and People for Economic Justice - took over the house and refused to leave.

There was a large garda presence at the house this morning as supporters of the Coyne's and anti-eviction groups turned up.

The men who took over the house, including Derek Coyne, said they did so peacefully.

Derek Coyne told the Herald he was "over the moon" to be back in the house today.

Speaking through a broken living room window, which the group say was not caused by them, he said: "I'm elated to be back in but it is distressing to see that somebody else has been sleeping in my parent's bed."

The men remained in the house this morning and accepted cups of coffe and sandwiches passed through the broken window by supporters.

Martin and Violet Coyne said they will not be moving into the property as they are still before the courts on a contempt of court matter that is due to be heard again next month.

Asked if he supported the actions of the protestors, Mr Coyne said: "Of course I do. We support their actions for the thousands of people who are in our situation."

"We are all talk in this country, but talk is cheap. Nothing gets done until there is action in this country," he added.

A garda source said a complaint of criminal trespass had been received after this morning's action.

Long-haul

Protestor John Squires said the group were not going to leave the house.

"We are here for the long-haul and we will be doing more of these repossessions," he said.

"There are people homeless all over the place through no fault of their own and here is a perfectly good house that was empty," he added.

"If the Government wanted they could sort this out, but they don't," he explained.

This week the Coyne's told the Herald that they are now sharing a child's bedroom with the three-year-old daughter of a relative who has put them up until they can find a more permanent home.

cfeehan@herald.ie

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