A man who appeared in court last week charged in connection with damage to a plot of land in Bornacoola had the case against him adjourned until later this month so that an inspection can be carried out at the site.
Willie Maughan, 9 Dolmen Court, Aughnacliffe, Longford appeared before Judge Seamus Hughes charged with damaging three rows of barbed wire from a fence belonging to Kevin Diffley and acausing €800 worth of damage at Cloonart, Nort, Bornacoola, Longford on November 24, 2017.
Outlining the evidence to the court, Kevin Diffley who has been farming the piece of land in question for the best part of 30 years, said difficulties between himself and the defendant began when the defendant purchased a house on the land two and a half years ago.
In his direct evidence to the court Mr Diffley said that while he was away in November 2017 his neighbour called him to tell him there had been criminal damage caused on the land.
“My neighbour told me that there was wire thrown in my field,” continued Mr Diffley.
“I went to the field and the wire fencing had been cut off between the posts.
“I have been having trouble with Mr Maughan for a number of years now; I’m farming about 100 acres - this particular land came up for sale and I bought it and Mr Maughan bought the house.”
Meanwhile the court heard that Mr Diffley had farmed the piece of land in question for over 30 years and was currently in the process of claiming squatters rights on it.
“Mr Maughan claims now that he owns the field - I do have a right of way to that land through his house, but he says he owns it, not me,” Mr Diffley added.
“Mr Maughan has broken down fences in my field and he has also put horses in there as well.”
Judge Hughes then heard that the field was currently unregistered and it had held that status for as long as Mr Diffley was farming it.
John Quinn solicitor for Mr Maughan then told the court that his client had gotten into the land before Mr Diffley had the 12 years squatters title completed.
“Access to the house and access to this land cross over the unregistered field.”
Judge Hughes then asked if Mr Diffley had a contract to prove that he had purchased the land for x amount of euros?
Mr Quinn pointed out that while that contract was not available during the court sitting it could be obtained for another day in court.
Judge Hughes subsequently adjourned proceedings until later this month and ordered an inspection of the field to be carried out in the meantime. The matter will appear back before the courts on November 13 next.