Belfast Telegraph

Restraining order for abusive neighbour

By Nevin Farrell

A woman was forced to move from her home because of a campaign of harassment carried out by a neighbour, a court heard.

Maria Kleyn, who was previously convicted in her absence, verbally abused the injured party, blew car horns and more on dates between June 1 2014 and June 10 the following year.

At a subsequent sentencing hearing, the 38-year-old defendant was warned to change her behaviour and was given a two-year conditional discharge.

Kleyn, from Lindara Park in Larne, was also handed a two-year restraining order banning her from contacting the victim.

District Judge Nigel Broderick warned the defendant that she should not treat the sentence as lenient and said that he wanted to ensure she would subject no one else to harassment.

He told her: "It went on for a year and the injured party had to move home.

"Whatever happened between you and the injured party, make sure it doesn't happen again."

A prosecutor explained that the women were neighbours and that the defendant had subjected the injured party to harassment for several months.

The lawyer added that the incidents included Kleyn standing at a doorstep shouting abuse and driving slowly past the injured party's house and staring in.

A defence lawyer claimed the incidents were "all relatively low-level" and said the two women were no longer neighbours because the injured party moved away in spring this year, adding that this "wasn't as a direct result of this prosecution".

When a prosecutor said they wanted a restraining order to stop Kleyn having contact with the injured party, the defence lawyer said his client had concerns regarding the scope of that.

He questioned if seeing her across the street in the town would constitute a breach.

Judge Broderick said it appeared all the harassment was confined to the residential area, but the prosecutor said there had also been an incident elsewhere in Larne.

The defence lawyer said there had been a lot of complaints made by the injured party to police, but when the PSNI attended no offences were detected.

He added: "The vast bulk of it was the sounding of car horns outside the house."

Belfast Telegraph

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