By Ann O'Loughlin
A financial fund-appointed receiver has secured a High Court injunction against the owners of several Dublin properties over reports last weekend that tenants had been forcibly removed from one of the premises.
At the High Court today, receiver Ken Fennell secured an interim injunction against Mr Paul Howard and Ms Una McClean preventing them from interfering with properties including several apartments in Mountjoy Square in central Dublin, as well as properties at Harold's Cross, and Kilnamanagh, Dublin 24.
The order requires the defendants, their agents and all persons with knowledge of the injunction to cease tresspassing, not damage, not collect rent from, and hand over possession of the properties to the receiver.
Mr Fennell's counsel Stephen Byrne Bl said his client brought the action to prevent ongoing interference with the receivership, and over concerns for the safety of tenants who have a right to be in the properties.
Mr Fennell of the firm Deloitte claims there has been a deliberate attempt to thwart the receivership.
The orders were granted, on an ex parte basis, by Ms Justice Caroline Costello. The case will come back before the court later this week.
Seeking the orders counsel said his client was appointed receiver by Promontoria (Oyster) DAC which in 2016 acquired loans advanced by First Active to Mr Howard and Ms McClean, with an address at Larkfield Avenue, Harold's Cross, Dublin.
Counsel said Mr Howard and Ms McClean, jointly owe the fund €1.4m while Mr Howard owes an additional €400,000.
Talks between the parties over the debts had not been successful counsel said, which resulted in the receiver being appointed.
In correspondence with Mr Fennell, counsel said Mr Howard disputes the validity of the receivership.
Counsel said "the genesis" of the injunction application were reports in the media last weekend that tenants were allegedly forcibly removed from one of the apartments in Mountjoy Square by Mr Howard and others, and one of them needed to be hospitalised at the weekend.
While this was being investigated by the receiver, the issue was of concern to Mr Fennell. An inspection revealed that the property was significantly damaged, counsel said.
Counsel said there had been other incidents of concern.
Counsel said Mr Fennell had discovered that Mr Howard had "stolen a march" on the receiver and had sought and obtained the early payment of rent from some of the tenants at the properties.
That money should have been paid to the receiver to reduce the defendant's indebtedness to the fund, counsel said.
Some the properties were found to be in a poor condition, counsel said.
Counsel said that Mr Fennell's representative found a mother and her daughter living in a one room shed beside another of Mr Howard's properties.
Counsel there also had been an attempt by Mr Howard and another person to remove a representative of the receiver from one of the properties.
The gardaí were called, and, after they left, the locks on the premises were changed by Mr Howard, counsel said.