AIB and former financial services executives settle legal dispute

A legal dispute between AIB and several former senior executives whom the bank accused of secretly scheming to take over its international financial services business has been settled, the Commercial Court has heard.

AIB and former   financial services executives settle legal dispute

AIB had claimed the executives, and a number of European-based financial services companies unlawfully conspired with a rival business to take over the clients, business and staff of AIB’s international financial services (IFS) business after the bank decided to sell the IFS business to another group, Capita.

The individuals concerned and a number of defendant companies — Centralis, based in Luxembourg, Centralis Switzerland, and Centralis Hungary — had all denied the bank’s claims. The companies had also pleaded that AIB’s actions had prevented them from competing against IFS.

Yesterday, Mr Justice Peter Charleton was informed by Michael McDowell, counsel for AIB, that the action against all parties had been settled and could be struck out. No details of the settlement were revealed in open court, and the terms are believed to be confidential.

The case, had it gone on, was expected to last for four weeks.

The action was against former AIB executives Aidan Foley, formerly of Grawn, Kilmacthomas, Wexford; Gerry McEvoy, formerly of Shandon Park, Phibsboro, Dublin; Derek O’Reilly of Fernleigh Drive, Castleknock, Dublin; and Joe Walsh, formerly of Grosvenor Terrace, Monkstown, Co Dublin.

AIB had brought similar actions against Pat Diamond, Elton Park, Sandycove in Dublin, and Andrew O’Shea, formerly of Ashbrook House, Julianstown, Co Meath. However, AIB’s proceedings against these two individuals were settled some time ago.

In its action, the bank had claimed that the executives were behind a management buyout offer for AIB International Financial Services, which did not go ahead.

When AIB decided in Jun 2011 to sell the business to Capita, the executives set up a rival business to take over IFS business in a scheme known as “plan B”, the bank alleged.

AIB claimed, after 25 directors and employees left IFS between June and Aug 2011, Capita had reduced from €55m to €33m its offer for IFS.

It claimed the defendants’ alleged actions led to it incurring significant loss and damage.

The defendants denied AIB’s claims, denied any wrongdoing and denied that confidential information belonging to AIB was passed on to a rival.

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