Anglo vows to vigorously defend legal action filed by Quinn family
Published 20/05/2011 | 05:00
ANGLO Irish Bank is set to "vigorously defend" the Quinn family's recently filed law suit, but bosses have yet to reach a final decision on whether the bank will launch its own legal action to recover the family's debt.
The news comes after the Quinn's lodged papers in the High Court on Wednesday, suing Anglo for alleged negligence, breach of duty and intentional and/or negligent infliction of economic damage.
The case will centre on the circumstances behind the Quinn family's loss of control over the Quinn Group conglomerate, where Anglo recently installed a receiver.
Anglo, which is owed some €2.88bn by tycoon Sean Quinn and his family, won't be able to respond to the Quinns' allegations until the family lodges a "statement of claim" setting out more details.
Sources close to the bank yesterday confirmed, however, that Anglo would "vigorously defend" the lawsuit.
One of the core issues is likely to be the validity of the charges that Mr Quinn's children granted over various Quinn family companies as security for their loans.
The Quinns claim the charges are invalid, unenforcable and of no legal effect. Anglo's new management team is understood to have carried out an extensive review of the charges, and consider them sound.
The Quinns are also seeking declarations from Anglo that guarantees given over six Cyprus companies are invalid. The assets held by these companies are unclear.
The Quinn action that has been filed is one of three mooted legal battles arising out of the Quinn debacle.
Anglo has been mulling over taking legal action against Mr Quinn and his children to compel them to submit information about their wealth and devise some arrangements to deal with the outstanding debts.
Anglo had been hoping to resolve matters by agreement, but the Quinns' legal action makes this significantly less likely.
A decision on any action by Anglo is expected to be taken by the board over the coming days.
The bank declined to comment yesterday.
The Quinns have also been considering taking legal action against the Central Bank over its March 2010 decision to put Quinn Insurance into administration.
A spokesman for the family yesterday declined to comment on whether this action was likely to proceed.