By Ann O'Loughlin
The High Court has continued an injunction against the owners of several Dublin properties who allegedly forcibly removed tenants from one of their premises.
Receiver Ken Fennell secured a temporary injunction against Mr Paul Howard and Ms Una McClean preventing them from interfering with the properties including several apartments in Mountjoy Square in central Dublin, and properties at Harold's Cross, and Kilnamanagh, Dublin 24.
The order prevents the defendants, their agents and all persons with knowledge of the injunction from trespassing, damaging, and collecting rent from the tenants living in the properties.
The injunction also requires the defendants to hand over possession of all the properties to the receiver, and the prevents them from interfering with the receivership.
Mr Fennell, represented by Stephen Byrne Bl, was appointed receiver over the properties last month by financial fund Promontoria (Oyster) DAC.
He sought the injunction over concerns for the safety and welfare of those renting the accommodation, particularly following reports last weekend that tenants were forcibly removed from one of the apartments at Mountjoy Square.
He was also concerned about ongoing interference and deliberate attempts to thwart the receivership, the state of some of the premises.
When the matter returned before the High Court today, Ms Justice Caroline Costello agreed to continue the orders and adjourned the matter to February 13 next.
Solicitor Mr Maurice Lyons said he had taken instructions from the defendants, but due to a conflict of interest was unable to formally represent them.
Another lawyer would have to represent the defendants, who were not present in court.
Mr Lyons said defendants were giving undertakings to agree to abide by the injunctions and would also hand over any rent that may have been collected following the making of the order to the receiver.
Following an application by Mr Byrne the judge also granted the receiver permission to bring a motion for attachment and committal against the defendants.
Counsel said that hopefully there would be no need to advance that particular application, given the undertakings given by the defendants.
Counsel said Mr Fennell had sought the application after he obtained information Mr Howard had attempted to collect rent on Thursday, the day after he injunction had been granted.
Counsel said Mr Howard had sent text messages to tenants concerning the payment of rent, while two agents of Mr Howard had attended at Mountjoy Square on Thursday.
The Judge also adjourned the attachment and committal motion to February 13.
Previously the court heard that in 2016, Promontoria acquired loans advanced by First Active to Mr Howard and Ms McClean, with an address at Larkfield Avenue, Harold's Cross, Dublin.
It claims 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, and the receiver was appointed.
In correspondence with the receiver Mr Howard disputes the validity of the receivership.