Former Anglo execs jailed for conspiracy to hide FitzPatrick accounts

Former Anglo execs jailed for conspiracy to hide FitzPatrick accounts

Three former Anglo Irish Bank officials have been jailed for between 18 months and three years for conspiring to conceal or alter bank accounts being sought by Revenue.

Former chief operations officer Tiarnan O'Mahoney, former company secretary Bernard Daly and former assistant manager Aoife Maguire were found guilty by a jury yesterday on all charges after nearly seven hours deliberations and a two month trial.

O'Mahoney, who was second in command at the bank, received a three year sentence. Daly was sentenced to two years and Maguire got 18 months. All sentences are to begin immediately.

Former Anglo execs jailed for conspiracy to hide FitzPatrick accounts

Judge McCartan said it was clear the accused engaged in a deliberate and ongoing fraud to stop the accounts of their employer, Anglo chairman Sean FitzPatrick, from being disclosed to Revenue.

The judge called Anglo a “very sick bank” which “took a very, very dishonest approach to Revenue.”

He said the accused's actions were “done out of misplaced loyalty but were still dishonest and were against all good banking principle and practices.”

The court heard that there is no statutory maximum prison term for the charge of conspiracy as it is a common law offence. However Judge McCartan indicated he will treat the maximum term for all offences as five years as they all related to the same scheme.

The sentencing hearing began at noon today during which the court heard a summary of the case from an officer from the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation. The judge also heard defence arguments for a non-custodial sentence, including the fact that former Anglo chairman Sean FitzPatrick was the “prime-mover” and main beneficiary of the fraud and that none of the accused profited from it in any way.

Counsel for Daly, Sean Guerin SC, asked the judge to bear in mind that the case against Mr FitzPatrick, who has never been charged in relation to the fraud, was stronger than the one against his client. He asked Judge McCartan to consider “the impunity that Mr FitzPatrick has been fortunate enough to meet in these matters.”

Counsel also said Daly, who was previously employed in the banking supervision division of The Central Bank, is acting as a co-operating prosecution witness in a separate case against Anglo Irish Bank.

Representing O'Mahoney, Brendan Grehan SC, said that at the time of the offences his client was in line to succeed Mr FitzPatrick as CEO of the bank but lost out to David Drumm who came from the lending side of the bank.

Former Anglo execs jailed for conspiracy to hide FitzPatrick accounts

Counsel said O'Mahoney came from the “more prudential” treasury side of Anglo and he was “deemed not to fit in with the culture of the bank.”

Shortly afterwards he left and went on to head up a company which failed “disastrously” and “publicly” during the downturn. He was forced to step down from the board of another company after he was charged with these offences.

Mr Grehan asked the court to remember that the bank itself is not on trial. He observed that “it’s a case that’s hard to divorce from the adverse publicity that attracts to anything with the toxic name Anglo or Anglo banker.”

Patrick Gageby SC, representing Maguire said that, unlike her co-accused, she was never an officer of the company and was far from it. He said she held the grade of assistant manager and that no-one answered to her.

He also presented evidence of Maguire's involvement in the Good Counsel GAA Club in Driminagh. He said she left Anglo in 2005 to care for her sick mother and has been unemployed for the last number of years.

Daly (aged 67) of Collins Avenue West, Whitehall, Dublin, O'Mahoney (aged 56) of Glen Pines, Enniskerry, Co Wicklow and Maguire (aged 62) of Rothe Abbey, South Circular Road, Kilmainham, Dublin had pleaded not guilty to seven charges.

The charges alleged that in 2003 and 2003 they conspired to hide or omit accounts, connected to Mr FitzPatrick from Anglo's Core Banking System (CBS) or from documentation provided to Revenue, who were conducting an investigation into bogus non-resident accounts which may have been liable for Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT).

There was a delay in taking the verdict yesterday because of an anonymous phone call to the office of the DPP saying that the jury foreman's wife was “very friendly” with Maguire. Judge McCartan decided that it was a hoax call after the jury foreman denied the claim.

More on this topic

Wicklow County Council puts brakes on Seán FitzPatrick's Greystones house-build planWicklow County Council puts brakes on Seán FitzPatrick's Greystones house-build plan

Major setback for Seann Quinn's children in €410m liability caseMajor setback for Seann Quinn's children in €410m liability case

Official who shredded key papers to explain decisionOfficial who shredded key papers to explain decision

'Is it more of the roll-over over Leo?' - SF reacts to €270m Anglo payout to junior bondholders'Is it more of the roll-over over Leo?' - SF reacts to €270m Anglo payout to junior bondholders


More in this Section

Fine Gael Senator's office vandalised in same week 250 of his posters are stolenFine Gael Senator's office vandalised in same week 250 of his posters are stolen

Cork Gardaí play down fears Cameron Blair stabbing suspect has fled countryCork Gardaí play down fears Cameron Blair stabbing suspect has fled country

Two men questioned in connection with Dublin shooting released without chargeTwo men questioned in connection with Dublin shooting released without charge

Paschal Donohoe: 'No panic' in Fine Gael over bad opinion pollPaschal Donohoe: 'No panic' in Fine Gael over bad opinion poll


Lifestyle

I see that a website describes the call of Canarian cory’s shearwaters as ‘waca waca’. It’s a mad, hysterical call, uttered when the parent birds arrive to feed their nestlings.Cory’s shearwaters show long-distance qualities

Is it too much to hope that an important public health matter, such as Lyme disease, will be an issue in the general election? There’s been a worrying reluctance by the authorities to face up to the extent of the disease here.Facing up to Lyme disease

A paper published in Current Biology examines the extinction of a colourful little bird which, until recently, thrived in the eastern US. With the appalling environmental catastrophe enveloping Australia, home to 56 of the world’s 370 parrot species, this account of the Carolina parakeet’s demise is timely.Trying to save the parrot is not all talk

The recent rescue of a trawler 20km north of Fanad Head in Co Donegal gave us a glimpse of the enormous seas that occasionally strike that part of the coast.Islands of Ireland: Inishbeg Island begs the question

More From The Irish Examiner