Ex-employee of Goodman's Parma Developments accused of blackmail
A former employee of Larry Goodman's Parma Developments "knowingly misappropriated" documents with a view to "extorting or blackmailing" Parma into settling a dispute, the High Court has heard.
Parma claims its former director Andrew Griffith is wrongly in possession of sensitive documents relating to Parma's tax arrangements, the court heard.
In a letter to Parma's solicitors, Griffith's solicitors said that after reviewing information he had retained after leaving the company, Mr Griffith discovered he was in possession of information relating to the company's structures, financial affairs and tax arrangements, the court heard.
The letter said that the information's nature "may give rise to a public interest exception to our client's (Griffith) confidentiality obligations."
Counsel for Parma Rossa Fanning told the court that his client was "exceptionally dismayed" at the turn events had taken and was seeking to have the information returned.
He said the remark about potentially releasing the information was "a thinly veiled way of saying: 'we reserve the right to release this information to the world'".
He said the implication of the remark was that there was something untoward and improper about Parma's affairs.
Mr Fanning said all the information in question had been made available to the Revenue Commissioners and that there was nothing improper in the information.
He said Mr Griffith's possession of the information was "tantamount to theft" and that it appeared Mr Griffith had copied the information on to a hard drive in addition to files directly connected with his own work.
Counsel for Mr Griffith, Stephen Moran, said his client had come in possession of the information "entirely legally and appropriately".
Mr Griffith has filed suit saying he is entitled to a 7.5pc share of the former Bank of Ireland site on Dublin's Baggot Street, which is being disputed by Parma.
The matter is back before the courts next month.