The proceedings against Maurice Healy, Glencoe, Knocksinna, Foxrock, Co Dublin, were transferred to the Commercial Court yesterday by Mr Justice Peter Kelly.
Hugh O’Flaherty, for Mr Healy, had sought an adjournment saying he had been unable to get instructions yet on Mr Healy’s attitude to the application for transfer. His usual solicitors felt conflicted in the matter and another firm had been contacted only very recently, he said.
Alison Keirse, for Anglo, objected to any adjournment saying the bank was concerned another party might bring proceedings in the interim against Mr Healy due to guarantees provided by him. Mr Healy had dealings with the bank’s corporate side for some time and was served with the proceedings on November 8, she added.
Mr Justice Kelly said it was unsatisfactory Mr Healy had provided no instructions to date, even on the application to transfer the case. This was a substantial claim which had not arisen in the last few days, where demand was issued last month and where Anglo feared another claim may be brought.
The judge said he would transfer the case and Mr Healy could instruct his lawyers whether he intended to defend the application for summary judgment. The nature of any defence should be outlined to the court on Thursday, he added.
The case arises from two loan facilities – the first, for a maximum £5.75m, was made available by Anglo in October 2008 to Mr Healy while the second, for €10.8m, was made available in May 2009.
The 2008 facility was to enable Mr Healy fund an equity investment in Calyx Holdings Ltd (CHL), a company set up to acquire Clayfox Gilttop Ltd and was secured by a mortgage of shares held by Mr Healy in CHL and an assignment of a life policy.
The 2009 facility was to fund personal investments by Mr Healy and was secured by charges over property and various shareholdings. However, Anglo claims, the liability of Mr Healy under the facility letters exceeds the value of any anticipated realisations from the secured assets.
Mr Healy was a founder and director of CHL and other companies in the Calyx group and Anglo had advanced considerable facilities to the Calyx group which were in default, the bank said. Anglo sold the Calyx debt to a third party and all connected security, including a performance guarantee from Mr Healy, were also transferred as part of the sale. Anglo said it had deferred action against Mr Healy until that transaction had completed.
The bank was anxious to get judgment against him in these proceedings as soon as possible.