Anglo trio face ‘unlawful financial assistance’ trial

Ex-Anglo chairman Seán FitzPatrick and two former colleagues have been sent forward for trial for providing “unlawful financial assistance” to 16 individuals.

The 64-year-old, as well as former Anglo finance director Willie McAteer and the bank’s former managing director for Ireland, Patrick Whelan, had been charged in July.

They are to go on trial accused of unlawfully helping to back a group of investors — including members of Seán Quinn’s family — to buy shares in the financial institution in 2008.

Mr FitzPatrick, of Camaderry, Whitshed Road, Greystones, Co Wicklow, stepped down in Dec 2008. Anglo was subsequently nationalised, with its collapse costing taxpayers about €30bn.

The charges relate to loans provided by Anglo to a group of investors known as the “Maple 10”, and to the five children of bankrupt businessman Seán Quinn and his wife Patricia — Seán Quinn Jr, who was jailed in July by the High Court for contempt of court, Colette Marie Quinn, Aoife Quinn, Ciara Quinn, and Brenda Quinn — to buy shares in the bank.

The 10 investors are property developer Patrick McKillen, Seamus Ross, Brian O’Farrell, John McCabe, Gerard Maguire, Patrick Kearney, Gerard Gannon, Gerard Conlon, Sean Reilly, and Joseph O’Reilly.

The three former bank chiefs were served with the books of evidence — three large boxes each packed with black hardback folders containing copies of the State’s evidence.

At Dublin District Court yesterday, Judge Cormac Dunne was told the DPP had consented to them being sent forward for trial, on 16 charges each, to the present term of Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.

Judge Dunne then made an order formally sending the three men forward for trial. They left the court but returned a few minutes later to confirm that they had signed their bail bonds.

Mr FitzPatrick’s sister Joyce O’Connor stood bail for him in the sum of €10,000. He has to sign on every Wednesday at Irishtown Garda station, Dublin, reside at his current address, and give gardaí 48 hours’ notice if he intends to change address or leave the country.

Mr McAteer’s wife, Maria, was allowed to stand €10,000 bail for him. The 61-year-old, with an address at Auburn Villas, Rathgar, Dublin, was earlier ordered to “surrender his passport for the duration of any proceedings” and he must give gardaí 48 hours’ notice if he intends to change address.

Mr Whelan, aged 50, of Rachra, Coast Rd, Malahide, Dublin, must sign on every Sunday at Malahide Garda station, reside at his home and give gardaí 48 hours’ notice of any change of address or plans to leave Ireland. His wife Sharon is acting as a bail-person for him to the tune of €10,000.

News: Date set for Quinns’ legal battle with Anglo

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