A FINE imposed on Helmut Kecskes, an Austrian resident in Majorca, for fencing off part of the Es Trenc coast, has been ratified by the Balearic High Court, which has rejected his appeal. Kecskes had sectioned off 12 square metres of sea frontage with rocks and fabric on a stretch of the coastline known as Es Trenc III and had allegedly declared that this was his area of beach and that no one had the right to bother him there.
Kecskes was given a fine of 1'400 euros as well as a demand to pay a further 300 euros which he had earned from his actions in an irregular manner.
Although the court had ruled that his actions violated a decree dating from November 2000 which established by-laws relating to the Balearic coastline, he lodged an appeal against the guilty verdict. Kecskes' appeal consisted, in short, of claiming that the fabric had had to be put up to act as a wind break because he was suffering from a chronic eye infection. At the same time, he alleged that he had not, in fact, built the stone wall but that it had been in existence since 1997. The court ruled that claims made in Kecskes' appeal did not tally with the events and circumstances which were first brought to court and which had been testified to by local police and coastguards. Any re-examination of the case would need to be based on evidence that the facts as they had been recorded were flawed. A new hearing could not be founded on the defendant's personal interpretation of the law. The magistrates emphasised the fact that Kecskes was present when legal proceedings were made against him and that it was irrefutable that he had declared the section of beach as his own. Magistrates confirmed that Helmut Kecskes had presented his case to the Spanish embassy in Vienna, giving details of his appeal.
The Court also commented that having examined the documents that accompany the appeal, the only paper to be appropriately dated was the certificate of posting. All other back-up material was dated prior to the events in question and therefore not relevant to the case.