A LIMERICK family who were forced to abandon their home due to gang threats and intimidation have won their case against the State for a confidential sum.
Eugene and Eileen Conway, who formerly lived at Clarina Avenue, Ballinacurra-Weston, with their four children, fled from their home in December 2012.
Speaking to the Limerick Leader this week, Mrs Conway said she was happy with the outcome: “We’re happy it’s settled. We can’t discuss the case.”
It is understood that the terms of the settlement are confidential, and Ms Conway declined to comment any further.
Defended by the Northside Community Law Centre, the couple took a civil case against Limerick City Council, who took over the work of the city’s regeneration agencies, the Minister for the Environment, who oversaw its implementation, the attorney general and the State.
Described as a test case, it is believed it could spark a plethora of other lawsuits against the State.
In the Conways’ neighbourhood, the local authority tenants transferred from houses around them leaving many neighbouring homes vacant and boarded up.
The home alongside the Conways at Clarina Avenue was vandalised, suffered flood damage and the property was set alight, becoming a haven for gangs. Fires were ignited in neighbouring houses and the Conways’ home was attacked.
They contacted the regeneration agencies for assistance in 2010 and lodged numerous complaints.
Gardai were regularly called into the area to deal with problems at the Conway home.
As the intimidation and threats around their home escalated, the family requested a transfer to another area and were informed they would be paid for their home by the regeneration agencies.
On December 15, 2012, Eugene Conway’s life was threatened at his home and family fled their home under the cover of darkness.