Couple mistakenly boarded up in Dublin home

A couple and their baby, who were mistakenly boarded up in their Dublin home by council workmen, have settled a claim for damages totalling 76,000 euros.

Tristan Ua Ceithearnaigh, 46, and Elisa Udtohan, 25, were at home in Eugene Street when corrugated iron sheets were attached to the door and window.

The couple ignored the doorbell as they were not expecting visitors.

But they thought they were under siege by criminals when they heard hammering.

In a civil bills issued against Dublin City Council the couple alleged they had been resting on the day in question after having done some shopping with their four-month-old baby, Mia.

Mr Ua Ceithearnaigh dialled 999 after shouting to the people outside that they were in the house and demanded to know what was happening as they saw six-inch nails come through the door frame.

The men hammering asked if he was a squatter and the tenant told them it was a privately rented house.


He heard someone say: 'hold on a minute', and they then started pulling nails out of the door frame, removing the corrugated iron.

Through a spy-hole, he saw two Dublin City Council vans outside.

He opened the front door and saw workmen, who were with the vans, begin fixing corrugated iron sheets they had removed from his home to a vacant house next door.

Both Mr Ua Ceithearnaigh and Ms Udtohan claimed they had been medically treated for emotional distress and had left the house shortly afterwards.

Dublin City Council denied the couple's allegations of falsely imprisoning them while they were in their home or defaming them by creating the impression they were squatters, undesirables or were being evicted.

Barrister Bernard McCabe told Judge Gerard Griffin in the Circuit Civil Court that the pair, who now live at The Mews, Collegeland, Saggart, had reached settlements in their damages claims for €38,000 each.

Judge Griffin struck out both actions on foot of undisclosed settlements.