Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Questions (218)

Tom Neville


218. Deputy Tom Neville asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the rights of landholders in combating trespassing on their lands; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46505/19]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

The property rights of landowners are protected under the Constitution and these rights are further protected under tort law. The tort of trespass to land is committed where a person, without lawful reason or justification, intentionally or negligently enters onto, or remains on, land in the possession of another person. Moreover, a person who enters land with lawful permission may become a trespasser where he or she breaches the terms of such permission. In such cases, the landowner may commence civil proceedings in order to protect his or her property rights.

Under section 19C of the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act 1994, as amended by the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2002, a person shall not, without the duly given consent of the owner, enter and occupy any land, or bring onto or place on any land any object, where such entry or occupation or the bringing onto or placing on the land of such object is likely to substantially damage the land, substantially and prejudicially affect any amenity in respect of the land, or prevent persons entitled to use the land or any amenity in respect of the land from making reasonable use of the land or amenity. A person found guilty of this offence shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding €4,000 or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding one month, or to both.