The official administering Sean Dunne’s Irish bankruptcy has consented to be cross-examined about the basis for his belief that certain asset transfers by Mr Dunne to his wife were invalid, the Court of Appeal has heard.
Gayle Killilea, the wife of Mr Dunne, will also be cross-examined in forthcoming High Court proceedings concerning the asset transfers, the three-judge court was told.
On that basis, an appeal by Ms Killilea against a High Court refusal to permit her lawyers to cross-examine bankruptcy official Chris Lehane was resolved on Monday and did not proceed.
The development, announced to the court by John O'Donnell SC, for Ms Killilea, came after Ms Killilea won an earlier appeal over a refusal to allow her lawyers cross-examine an American attorney involved in her husband's US bankruptcy proceedings.
The Court of Appeal previously ruled fair procedures required Ms Dunne's counsel should have the opportunity to cross-examine Timothy Miltenberger, the lawyer acting for the "Chapter 7" trustee dealing with Mr Dunne's US bankruptcy and overturned the High Court’s refusal to permit that cross-examination.
The cross-examination disputes arose after Mr Lehane brought proceedings over the alleged fraudulent transfer of assets in South Africa and Ireland between Mr Dunne and Ms Killilea.
Mr Lehane's proceedings relate to agreements between Mr and Mrs Dunne in 2005 and 2008 to transfer interests to her in a number of assets, including the Lagoon Beach hotel in Cape Town, South Africa, and shares in a company, Mavior.
Ms Dunne, who denies the share transfers are invalid, claims the Official Assignee's proceedings are unfair because, she contends, they cover the same ground as proceedings in the US.
Mr Lehane maintains the US trustee had offered to assist in ensuring there was no duplication of proceedings in both jurisdictions.
In a ruling last month permitting the High Court cross-examination of Mr Miltenberger by lawyers for Ms Killilea, the Court of Appeal said Mr Lehane's lawyers must also be permitted cross-examine Ms Dunne's US attorney, Alec Ostrow.
The Court of Appeal has also directed the High Court to reconsider Ms Killilea’s application for a strikeout, or a stay, of Mr Lehane's proceedings arising from her claim the US is the appropriate jurisdiction or forum for those.