Transfer to wife ‘was to defraud’

A businessman against whom AIB obtained a €3.48m judgement last March had transferred €820,000 and a property in the US to his wife with the intention of defrauding creditors, it has been claimed in the Commercial Court.

Property developer Garech McGuinness, of Whispering Pines, Ennis, Co Clare, and his business partner Patrick Taylor, Moyreisk, Quin, Co Clare, had the judgement entered against them after a judge found they had not met the test necessary to establish an arguable defence to AIB’s claim for judgement arising out of default on loans.

Now, the bank says, between July 2013 and July 2014, Mr McGuinness transferred four sums totalling €820,926 to his wife, Justine McGuinness.

It was alleged that around July 2014 he transferred to her “for a nominal consideration” a residential property in Massachusetts, which the bank believes was worth not less than €250,000.

Lynne Allen, of AIB , says these transfers were effected “with the dominant intention of defrauding creditors”.

She also says, in an affidavit, they were done without reference or notice to the bank and at a time when Mr McGuinness was in significant default of his obligations to AIB.

Mr Justice Brian McGovern yesterday admitted the case to the Commercial Court list, on consent between the parties, and adjourned it until October.

Mr McGuinness and Mr Taylor originally received the loans from AIB in 2011.

They fell into arrears and the bank demanded repayment in 2015. There were still no further payments and AIB sought judgement.

The men claimed they had an arguable defence against summary judgement and the case should receive a full hearing because the original loans were supplanted by a revised 2013 loan agreement.

The bank said the revised agreement never came into effect because the defendants failed to take necessary steps to create a charge over the Ennis sites which they had offered as security.

Judge McGovern ruled in March that AIB was entitled to summary judgement.


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