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Violet Coyne outside the court today

Couple evicted from home before they could get dressed may have to 'sleep in a van'

Martin and Violet Coyne are left homeless after being evicted from their residence in Castleknock.

MARTIN AND VIOLET Coyne may have to sleep in a van after they were evicted from their home in Castleknock, Dublin earlier today.

The eviction took place at 7.30am this morning and saw Martin and Violet removed from their home without being given an opportunity to dress themselves just hours before they were due in court in a last-ditch attempt to avoid eviction.

ACC Bank secured an eviction order after the couple’s previous landlord was unable to keep up mortgage payments on the property. The Coynes have been living in the house for fifteen years.

Martin Coyne was present in court without shoes while his wife Violet Coyne was wearing a dressing gown.

The case today saw the Coynes’ barrister Suzanne Boylan argue that under section 133 of the Land and Conveyance Law Reform Act of 2009 it is illegal for the sheriff to seize a domestic tenancy.

Boylan described how the couple had been “rough handled” and were not allowed back into their house to retrieve their belongings.

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Counsel for ACC Bank Stephen Byrne denied that the couple had not been allowed back to retrieve their property. Permission was granted for a friend of the couple and an accomplice to return to the house for the couples belongings this evening.

The court heard the Coynes were unable to find suitable alternative accommodation due to the rent allowance not covering higher rents.

Boylan stepped in to represent the couple at a late stage as the Coynes were unable to access help from the Legal Aid Board. They are yet to have their case assessed.

A court order was made in March by Civil Court Judge Jacqueline Linnane for the property to be vacated. In June Coyne gave an oath to vacate the property.

Video / YouTube

Had the couple not been evicted this morning the court would have had the power to have them arrested.

Today’s hearing before Judge Raymond Fullam, which was delayed a number of times, was adjourned until October 7.

However, this morning’s eviction by the bank sees the Coynes effectively homeless. The couple say they have nowhere to stay this evening and Martin Coyne suggested that the couple might have to “sleep in a van”.

“I worked for fifty years, and do you know what, I wish I hadn’t. For all the good it’s done us,” said Coyne outside the court.

Socialist TD Ruth Coppinger was also present at the court today and said the couple had not been well advised in recent times.

The Coynes were not well advised. The sheriff arrived today at 7.30am without any notice. It was timed to coincide with today’s court case. It is a political issue,” she said. 

Speaking outside the court Coppinger said, “there should be a law barring any bank from repossessing a family’s house”.

Read: Bailiffs evict Castleknock pensioners ahead of court hearing

Also: Pensioners could face jail over housing eviction