Bank-appointed receivers have regained possession of the farm belonging to former winners of RTÉ’s Ireland’s Fittest Family entertainment programme, the High Court heard yesterday.
Last Thursday, receivers Kieran Wallace and David Swinburne of KPMG secured a temporary injunction against Peter Kingston, his wife, Tracey, and their son Richard, in respect of their 170-acre farm at Crayden Hill, Nohoval, Co Cork.
The court injunctions had been sought after the receivers claimed the Kingstons had earlier this month unlawfully retaken possession of the farmland the receivers had taken charge of last December. The retaking of the farmland was something the Kingstons, who won TV programme in 2014, were not entitled to do and were now trespassing, it was claimed.
Stephen B Byrne, counsel for the receivers, who were appointed by ACC Loan Management, told Mr Justice Peter Kelly yesterday the receivers had regained possession of the farm last Friday and the injunction was being complied with.
Mr Kingston, who represented himself, told the court he was somewhat taken by surprise by the receivers proceedings as he had been away on a “religious retreat”, but accepted Mr Justice Kelly’s contention the matter had not “come out of the blue” given there had been correspondence with the receiver’s lawyers prior to the injunctions being sought. Mr Kingston said he had gone back onto the land to deal with ragwort growth and to feed animals.
Mr Kingston said he “took exception” to claims made on behalf of the receivers the farm, which included 1,000 cattle, was in a poor state of affairs and required considerable bank expense to rectify.
Mr Byrne told the court any suggestion the farm was not in a poor state when the receivers took possession would be “hotly contested” by his clients.
Mr Justice Kelly agreed to adjourn the case for two weeks with the injunction to remain in place against all parties. This was to allow Mr Kingston prepare a sworn statement in response to the receivers claims.
ACC Loan Management, which is owed €2.4m by Peter and Tracey Kingston arising out of two mortgage agreements the parties had entered into almost 10 years ago, claims the farmland had been put up as security.
The farm was at the centre of related High Court proceedings in April when Cork County Sheriff, Sinead McNamara, who was in the process of selling the Kingston’s herd of 1,000 cattle, secured injunctions against Jerry Beades and his New Land League group.
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