Quinn thanks supporters in letter from prison cell

Jailed former billionaire Seán Quinn has written to supporters from his prison cell to thank them for standing behind his family.

He claimed he will pursue a legal challenge against the former Anglo Irish Bank next year and when this is heard “the truth will come out”.

The letter was circulated a day after it was announced that he will receive a temporary release in time for Christmas after he was sent to Mountjoy for contempt of court.

His friend and parish priest, Fr Gerry Comiskey, was with him when he learned of his release for Christmas and he told local radio station, Northern Sound, he was delighted at the decision.

In his letter, Mr Quinn said he was overwhelmed by the volume of letters he had received despite what he said was a bid to blacken his name.

He said it was easier to write an open letter than to thank each person individually. “People can see through the fact that the aim of the regulator, Anglo, and the Government is to blacken the name of my family through the media, and that indeed it is in their interests to do so,” he wrote.

Mr Quinn conceded he made mistakes with his investments in Anglo.

“I am the first to admit that I foolishly decided to invest heavily in Anglo Irish Bank,” he wrote. “However the monies used to maintain the CFD position are the subject of a legal case next year, so I can’t comment much more on that. Up to that point, however, from 1973 I ran what I believe was a fantastic company.”

Mr Quinn said he could not comprehend what had happened since April last year, and claimed he had no choice but to go down the route he did with regards to his assets.

“I accept that perhaps we shouldn’t have gone to the lengths that we did, but we didn’t have very many options, given that they had taken the entire company illegally, and were threatening to take our home,” he said.

Mr Quinn will be allowed home from Mountjoy prison on Christmas Eve until St Stephen’s Day.

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