€47m judgment sought from Kelleher

Nama is pursuing businessman Garrett Kelleher for €46.8m summary judgment orders arising mostly from a limited guarantee relating to substantial loans made by the former Anglo Irish Bank for developments in Ireland, the US and Belgium.

Nama claims €350m is outstanding under those loans and Mr Kelleher is liable under guarantee for €40m.

Mr Kelleher will contend he was assured he would not be pursued under his guarantee given his “extensive co-operation” with Nama, his counsel Michael Cush told the Commercial Court.

The agency is also seeking summary judgment against him for an additional €6.8m arising from facilities advanced to CWD Properties Ltd from 2005 in connection with a development at Cratloe Woods, Limerick.

The €40m claim against Mr Kelleher, of Herbert Park, Ballsbridge, Dublin, arises from his guarantee, limited to €50m, of the liabilities of some companies of the ‘Shelbourne Connection’. Some €10m has been recovered due to Nama calling in a guarantee of a company with the effect, Nama claims, Mr Kelleher remains liable for €40m.

The Shelbourne Connection is, or has been, involved in various property and development projects, including the Spire development in Chicago, Nama said.

Nama said the loans which are subject of this case were advanced to CWD Properties Ltd and the ‘Modillion Borrowers’, which formed part of a group of companies identified by Nama as the Shelbourne Connection, ultimately owned and controlled by Mr Kelleher. When Nama acquired the loans in 2010, the indebtedness was some €400m, and is now €350m, it added.

It is claimed the Modillion loans were made on dates from 2007 and were to be repaid on or before December 2015, while the Cratloe facilities were repayable on demand or had to be repaid in full by December 2014. Nama claims default occurred on the Modillion loans on dates in 2012, 2013, and 2014, and also alleges no payments have been made in interest or principal on the Cratloe loans since March 2009.

The case was transferred to the Commercial Court this week.

Mr Cush said the essence of his client’s defence was he got representations and reached an agreement he would not be pursued over the guarantee given his “extensive co-operation”.

Mr Justice Peter Kelly made directions for exchange of legal documents and fixed the application for hearing in October.

In its claim, Nama said it had engaged with Mr Kelleher with a view to working out an overall resolution of the debts of the Shelbourne Connection.

It rejected a business plan advanced by him in July 2011, but provided interim conditional support for the connection for six months. In December 2011, Mr Kelleher had also given a proposal to Nama for the costs of managing his asset portfolio.

Nama later called in a €10m guarantee provided by RBS Specialised Property Investments Ltd as part of overall security provided for the Modillion loans. In February 2013, it said it set out terms for continued “forbearance”.

After it decided in March 2014 to demand repayment of the Modillion and Cratloe facilities, solicitors for Mr Kelleher alleged it had breached its duty of care to the Shelbourne Connection, Nama said. It appointed receivers over various properties held by the connection and initiated these proceedings due to “growing frustration” at the increased lack of co-operation and assistance from the connection, it said.


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