Author sued for tens of thousands in unpaid rent

Alan Barry, the author of the book Salesman With an AK47, is being sued by two of his former landlords for unpaid rental debts running into tens of thousands.

According to a solicitor for the Residential Tenancies Board and landlords Michael Carroll and Albert Connaughton, he is now nowhere to be found.

Una Cassidy, counsel for the board, was yesterday granted an order by Judge Jacqueline Linnane in the Circuit Civil Court, allowing the board to serve Mr Barry with debt recovery proceedings by way of email and through his Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Deborah Gilroy, a lawyer with Eversheds Solicitors, told the court in an affidavit that summons servers had been unable to serve Mr Barry at former addresses at The Laurels, Dalkey Avenue, Co Dublin, and Knockduff, Kinsale, Co Cork.

Ms Gilroy stated that following investigations, her legal firm believed Mr Barry now moved addresses on a regular basis, dividing himself between the UK and Ireland.

She said proceedings against Mr Barry had been allocated a hearing date for December 18, 2015, and he had provided the board with a new address for service at Dalkey Avenue. A summons sent through registered post had been returned undelivered.

Ms Gilroy said that in November, Mr Barry had been heard giving a radio interview to Newstalk FM on his book which records his time as a Dubliner spent in the North as a soldier in the British Army during the 1980s.

“He was promoting his new book Salesman with an AK47, and had indicated he was currently living in Kinsale, Co Cork,” Ms Gilroy told the court.

She said that after Eversheds had been informed that Mr Barry drives a blue Jaguar with an English registration, a company of summons servers had been instructed to carry out investigations about his whereabouts so he could be served with the debt recovery proceedings.

It had been believed he lived in Knockduff, Kinsale, but three attempts to serve him at Knockduff had failed. Neighbours confirmed he resided there on an intermittent basis.

Ms Gilroy said that on April 20, Eversheds had received a letter from Kane Tuohy, Solicitors, indicating that they acted on behalf of an Anna Sorensen, another landlord whose premises had been abandoned by Mr Barry in or around late December 2015 or early January.

The court was told Barry had a number of email addresses. His website and his Twitter account, as well as his Facebook account, contained photographs and information confirming him as the author and respondent in the proceedings. Ms Gilroy told Judge Linnane the only way in which the proceedings could be brought to Mr Barry’s attention was by an order for substituted service through his online accounts.

In one case, it is alleged Mr Barry owed, at a date last year, €19,519 to one landlord.

He was not represented in court today as the application had been brought in his absence.

Judge Linnane granted the order to substitute service by way of email, Twitter, and Facebook.


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