Action No230 of 1992
5th April, 2000
for the Plaintiff
Mr. Dujon for the Defendant
- Ejectment - Action time barred - Section 12(2) of the
Limitation Act - Application of Act to actions of trespass.
J U D G M E N T
is an action to eject the Defendant from a piece of land to
the south of plot 36 of the North Stann Creek lands, formerly
the Carib Reserve. Plot 36 was acquired by the Plaintiff from
his father by a Deed of Gift dated 15th August, 1989. His
father had acquired it by an Indenture dated 10th May, 1969.
Although the Plaintiff only acquired legal title to the land
in 1989, he had in fact been given it informally by his father
as long ago as 1972.
time that his father acquired the land, there were grapefruit
trees to the south of the plot already established. The Plaintiff
told me that the Defendant, Austin Gabourel, had been sold
these trees in 1979 and that ever since he had harvested and
cleaned the trees each year. The Plaintiff told me that he
was unable to cut down the trees because Mr. Gabourel would
have complained that they were his, Gabourel's trees. He also
told me that he had put up a fence where he said the boundary
was to the south of the trees but that Mr. Gabourel had removed
that fence and finally he had resorted to these legal proceedings
which were begun in 1992.
gave a certain amount of evidence about a surveyor visiting
and where he said the peg for the south east corner of plot
36 should lie and that the grapefruit trees that I have mentioned
therefore lay within plot 36 but this, of course, had been
denied by the defendant. I don't need to decide whether the
Plaintiff was right in where he says the south east corner
of this plot of land should be, but I am inclined to think
that he probably was right and therefore that there has been
a trespass by the defendant on the land to which the Plaintiff
is legally entitled.
I don't need to decide finally whether the Plaintiff is right
or not is that Mr. Dujon, for the Defendant, (who did not
come to Court to give evidence) says that the action is time
barred by Section 12(2) of the Limitation Act, given the Plaintiff's
evidence that the defendant had been on the land where the
grapefruit trees lie since 1979, which is at least 13 years
prior to the commencement of these proceedings. It seems to
me that Mr. Dujon's defence must be a good one and no answer
to it has been suggested by Mr. Gaznabbi who appeared for
the Plaintiff. In those circumstances I have no choice but
to dismiss his claim which I do.
discussions, Plaintiff to pay costs which is to be satisfied
in full by the set off of costs ordered on earlier occasion.]