Dear Dr. Lyons,
We the family of Freddie Andrews wish to put a formal application to have our brothers affairs removed from the jurisdiction of the court. It is horrendous that the 'bones' of our brother can still be picked in order to placate the guilty and by those who assumed power to protect him.
The family are treated as superfluous baggage and ignored when possible and given the least possible information. Solicitors appear to be powerless or unwilling to protect Freddie and even at this late stage Mr Hall still refuses to listen to us. He appears to prefer to accept without question the evidence from those who divested Freddie of his estate.
Last Friday our brother was handed the enclosed on entering the court but we his sisters were given no notice of what was to take place. All appeared to be agreed the previous day. Were we not supposed to know what was to be discussed in case we would object? We certainly would have if we had known.
Decisions are taken sub-rosa and without any respect to the family and most important against the interests of our brother. We will not stand by and watch a mental patient being treated like a 'lump of dough' and his human rights trodden on. His valuable home taken from him, his estate plundered and still the powers that be wish to cover all this up. Mr Hall has twice attempted, behind our backs, to sell Freddie's show-room, ground and Francis St., even though it took us seven years to get it back. Mr Hall put in writing in his report that this property was never sold yet you Dr Lyons have evidence in a letter from the Ryland Vehicle Group in Birmingham that they purchased it. According to the fraud squad one million was given to Mr.C Gilpin and £375,000 to his solicitor in cash. Freddie got nothing. How then can Mr Hall sell this property again?
We have managed to stop the sale to Neville Johnston's the late Mr. Gilpin's company, but we feel this attempt will be tried again. If Neville Johnston's company were able to give this back to the Ryland Vehicle Group it would be the best way of stopping an alleged large damages claim but why should Freddie be forced to give up his Smithfield property to again placate the people who took over this place for nothing.
It is a criminal offence to draw up a Contract to sell this property when money has already been accepted for it by the late Mr C Gilpin and his solicitor. What would have been the position if we had allowed this sale to go through?
Since stopping this sale Mr Hall has negotiated back rent. This was done by the estate agent Mr Deane who undervalued Smithfield by forty thousand and his house by twelve thousand. Mr Deane has now set a rent on this property of less than £5,000 per year. This would not pay for one room in Belfast - let alone a large car show room office and Francis St. But then again there is no protection or justice in the courts for patients in Northern Ireland and they appear to have to be thankful for small mercies.
We have lost all faith in the legal profession and those 'concerned' with Mental Health. We refuse to stand by any longer and watch Freddie being given the 'scraps' of his valuable estate because he has no rights and no bargaining power to protect himself. We will not go to another court and watch the gyrations in the courts dishing out 'crumbs to our brother and expecting the family to be pleased that he gets any.
Freddie was provided with a home in a very run down condition by, again, Mr C Gilpin and his solicitor. We will not allow Freddie to spend one penny on a house that he could not choose and when these people had no mandate to act for him. Our father had, just before he died, installed a complete new bathroom for Freddie with sunken bath, shower, bidet and matching sink unit in pale peach and also had installed a new pale blue bathroom with matching bidet and sink in the other bathroom. He also put in the most up to date oil fired Aga Cooker in dark blue in the kitchen. Why Mr Deane wishes to say in court that these quarters were not up to standard, was it for the same reasons that he undervalued all his other properties? Did Mr Hall not feel it necessary to see the conditions of these quarters in the house provided for Freddie or was he and his estate agent only interested in protecting the buyer of 14 Castlehill Road. Our father always kept our home in mint condition that is why it sold the first day of sale. This gave Freddie no chance of allowing others to give a higher bid. Again this sale was rushed through without giving the family a chance to intervene.
Why should Freddie deplete his income further to fix up a 'dump' of a house which would need a complete new kitchen, bathroom and a brick garage to replace the wooded one that is falling down? No wonder it took a year for someone like Freddie in his mental condition, to be made to pay for a house in such a derelict condition. Who is going to pay for this clean-up and put this house in the condition of his previous home that was ruthlessly taken from him, like all his other properties?
We will never give up on the fight for Justice no matter how long it takes. If we did, every Ward of Court and Mental patient would be in grave danger of being treated like Freddie and they may not have a family to fight for them and safeguard them from solicitors who appear to have no scruples about divesting a mental patient of his estate.
Our mother, now 90 years, bedridden, incontinent, almost blind and deaf, was threatened by Mr Hall in court and sent a writ which she would not be able to assimilate or understand. This was 'brave' act to walk to this house (which Mr Hall did) and hand this in at the door. Yet he knew our mother could not understand it. What again was his purpose as our mother's affairs were an open book to the 'Christian entrepreneur' and his solicitor. That is why her affairs were removed to Mr C Gilpin's solicitor so as he could see what she had and he was allowed this privilege by his solicitor. We had to put her through the expense of engaging a solicitor to protect her from the Official Solicitors outbursts in the court.Our sister was put out of her home and threatened by the previous official solicitor and now Mr Hall again uses threats and intimidation without fear in order to take the spotlight from the guilty.
Needless to say Mr Hall has not met our mother or sister, or ever given them a chance to tell him the truth. Does he not wish the truth to be brought to his notice? Mr Hall by using these tactics may think he can frighten the family and we will not persist in our efforts in having all exposed to the public but we will never give in to threats regardless of what position Mr Hall holds. Mr Hall appears to be answerable to no one. He even appears to be able to speak for the police and D.P.P. who were furnished with a detailed Report by an experienced fraud officer about three years ago. Mr Hall would prefer to attack a 90 year old woman. Because of the inaction by the police with regards to fraud and misappropriation of monies Mr Hall has been given plenty of time to clean up the morass and hoping we will give up eventually when all solicitors appear to have closed ranks.
We understand the Judge would like all closed up as quickly as possible but at what cost to Freddie? Does anyone care but the family whom Mr Hall wishes to destroy. We will be only too glad to discuss any aspect of Freddie's case with anyone interested in mental health. Will anyone listen?
In the initial stages of this investigation the Judge stated that "all was to be open and available to all", but this does not appear to be the case. Does this include the family who have been kept in the dark all along?
We were never told that there were to be pre-hearings where everything was signed and sealed before entering the court which made our presence in the courts futile. Meetings were convened behind closed doors which were not open to the family. Why? We were brought into the court under false pretences believing that all things pertaining to Freddie would be discussed in open court.
Solicitors involved were given every assistance by the family and valuable information pointed out to them but all fell on 'deaf ears'. Why these so-called custodians of the law should find it necessary to close ranks during the last two hearings and stage an exhibition which we were forced to witness on Friday last of these so-called 'pillars of society' clamouring for fees, pleased that their task was over and they had succeeded in 'winning' the seven year battle against a mental patient and his family. They were 'brave' men of conscience. Their case was an easily won 'victory', there were no interruptions on Freddie's behalf. In fact his name was never mentioned in the court or the fact that his signature was not valid on any document was also swept under the carpet. The family were never consulted about sales, accounts, bank statements or anything of interest to Freddie. We would like to know who gave Mr Hall the right to sanction the property sales of all Freddie's valuable estate, without consulting the family.
Freddie would need a new bathroom, kitchen and garage to bring this house up to the standard of what he was used to all his life. Freddie would have no understanding of what he was signing and could not enter into any contract for sale so we refuse to deplete his income further by spending the enormous amount that it would take to bring this house up to the condition of his previous home especially when he does not legally own it. The excuse given that Freddie had not the money to live in the home our father gave him is a diabolical lie but then that was not the only lie told against him and his family.
These men of absolute power may think that they have outwitted a mental patient and his family but we refuse to give up and sit back in order to allow a patient's human rights to be trampled on by anyone regardless of position.
We want Freddie's affairs removed from the control of the Official Solicitor before any further blunders are made and allow us to find someone interested enough in mental patients who will help us find a man of courage who will help us to have Freddie's estate openly and honestly investigated.
The Courts may feel that our case is a closed book but we the family will never give up - a new chapter is just beginning.
We hope to make the public aware of how mental patients are treated in the Courts with ruthless indifference! We are appealing to our Member of Parliament whom we have kept up to date in every aspect of the case, in order that he may bring all up in the English parliament and if possible before the European Court. We will also give all information to MENCAP and MIND in Harley St and any interested organisations concerned with Mental Health.
Signed by members of the family.
(Mrs) Vera Douglas
(Mrs) Eileen Wright
(Mrs) Betty Hamilton