THIS is the video which has caused “great excitement” amongst anti-austerity campaigners in Co Donegal – a deputy sheriff turning back on a planned eviction in Co Laois.
Now campaigners here are planning to adopt similar measures to prevent evictions in this county.
The video shows how housing activists and an independent TD prevented an attempted eviction of a man from his home in Laois.
A collection of housing groups and the People Before Profit TD Joan Collins were in Mountrath to prevent the deputy sheriff, accompanied by the gardaí, from evicting a man from his home, arguing that their actions were not constitutional.
Lee Wellstead, 47, was facing eviction from his home having lost in his battle against Ulster Bank in the Commercial Court, the Laois Nationalist reported.
He had bought the three-bedroom property on four acres of land in Knockanina – near Mountrath and Castletown – in 2003 for €80,000 and then acquired a top loan on the mortgage of €30,000. Having failed to keep up with repayments, the bank pursued him and was granted a repossession order last year, the paper reports.
Collins said she heard about Wellstead’s story and travelled to Laois with the other groups to help him defend his home.
In the video entitled ‘Constitution Halts Sheriff’ Ben Gilroy from Freedom from All Debt argues with the deputy sheriff, Pat Dunne, that it is unconstitutional for him to attempt to evict Wellstead from his home.