Saturday 25 February 2017

Colette Quinn withdrew €16,000 from several ATMs in just two hours, court told

Tim Healy

SEAN Quinn’s daughter Colette has revealed she withdrew €16,000 in 20 transactions mainly from ATMs in Belturbet and Cavan town over a period of two hours on June 14, 2012.

She also told the Commercial Court she has few documents or receipts indicating what had happened to €327,000 paid to her by Russian companies.

She said she was concerned about being asked about such matters for legal reasons and on the grounds of personal security.

Ms Quinn said about €340,000 was paid into her Ocean Bank account in Moscow in summer 2011 and there was about €12,500 left in that account last August.

She was paid the €340,000 under contracts of employment with Russian companies while she remained in Ireland apart from one visit to Moscow to open the Ocean Bank account, she also said. She had signed the contract without understanding it because it was in Russian and had no documents indicating what work she was expected to do, she agreed.

She had some receipts related to a small amount of the money but did not ask for receipts for the rest, she said. She was not in the habit of keeping receipts for day-to-day living expenses such as groceries and petrol but some of the money would be spent on other matters.

When asked whether that statement "entirely implausible", she said that was her evidence.

She also said she was awaiting bank statements from Ocean Bank and may be in a better position then to answer questions about the account.

Her counsel Hugh Hartnett objected to Ms Quinn being asked about the purpose of any payments and Ms Quinn also said she was nervous about answering such questions as there was a possibility of legal proceedings in Russia or Cyprus.

Ms Quinn is being cross-examined by Shane Murphy SC, for Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, with a view to establishing whether she has fully disclosed information concerning her assets and accounts and any involvement with companies in her family's international property group.

The cross-examination was sought by the bank prior to the full hearing of its long-running action against Sean Quinn and members of his family aimed at restraining IPG assets being moved out of the bank's reach.

The full hearing of the case, known as the "conspiracy" case, has been deferred until the criminal trials of former Anglo Chairman Sean Fitzpatrick and two former senior executives has concluded.

Mr Justice Kelly granted the stay, which was consented to by the Quinns and IBRC, on the application of the Director of Public Prosecutions who expressed concern certain issues raised in the action may overlap with issues in the criminal trials.

Those issues include alleged breaches of provisions of the Companies Act making it unlawful for a financial institution to advance loans to purchase its own shares.

Mr Fitzpatrick's trial, set for January 2014, could last months and any further proceedings such as appeals would prolong it further, meaning the conspiracy case, which began in June 2011, may not resume before the end of 2014.

The conspiracy case has involved more than 40 pre-trial applications and a series of legal proceedings in various countries worldwide, including Russia, Cyrpus and Ukraine.

A separate action by Mrs Patricia Quinn and her five children against the bank was previously adjourned, again at the application of the DPP, pending the outcome of the criminal case.

In their action, expected to last several months, the Quinns say they say they are not liable for €2.34bn loans advanced by Anglo to Quinn companies on grounds those loans were allegedly advanced for the unlawful purpose of propping up the bank's share price.

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