Department denies boss’s involvement in US censure

The Department of Finance has said claims that its new secretary general headed up a company when it was censured by a top-level US watchdog are incorrect.

Sinn Féin TD Pearse Doherty was thrown out of the Dáil chambers after he claimed that John Moran headed up a section of Zurich Capital Markets during the period in question.

Mr Doherty said the group was fined €16.8m by the US Securities and Exchange Commission for aiding and abetting hedge funds in defrauding mutual funds.

Following the outburst, Mr Doherty was suspended from the chamber.

Independent TD Mattie McGrath later reiterated the claim in the chamber. He went as far as to claim that Mr Moran should stand aside until he was able to come before a committee and answer questions over his CV. Mr McGrath also argued that senior Oireachtas committee members should be on interview boards to assess the appointment of senior civil servants.

However, the Department of Finance last night said the claims were incorrect.

The department stressed that Mr Moran was not in charge of the section of Zurich Capital Markets in the US when the events and investigation took place.

It added: “The events cited took place during 1999-2003, before Mr Moran arrived in the New York office.

“Indeed, Mr Moran was tasked with dealing with and resolving the issue. It is worth nothing also no suggestion was every made by the SEC of any involvement by Mr Moran in the activities that led to the censure.”

Mr Moran was head of banking in the department until recently and will replace the former secretary general, Kevin Cardiff.


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