Saturday 21 October 2017

Dunne claims email accounts were hacked by agents for Nama

Sean Dunne
Sean Dunne
Shane Phelan

Shane Phelan

Bankrupt developer Sean Dunne has claimed his email accounts were hacked by agents working for Nama.

The sensational allegation was made in an affidavit filed with a US court last week as part of proceedings where Mr Dunne has been ordered to produce emails related to his business dealings.

Mr Dunne has claimed he can't produce the emails, which date back to 2011 and 2012, as he shut down the email accounts used "because of a number of hackings and attempted hackings".

The Carlow-born developer said he believed this was carried out on behalf of Nama, which, he said, hired a corporate investigations company to investigate him in 2011.

The hacking claim was quickly denied by Nama, with a spokesman saying it was "completely without foundation".

Nama is a major creditor of the Carlow-born developer, who filed for bankruptcy in Connecticut in 2013 with debts of around €700m.

A court there is preparing to hear a lawsuit in which Mr Dunne's bankruptcy trustee Richard Coan is seeking to reverse the transfer of tens of millions of euro in assets to the developer's wife, Gayle Killilea.

Both Mr Dunne and Ms Killilea deny the asset transfers were fraudulent, saying they occurred when he was solvent.

At a hearing last Thursday, US Bankruptcy Court Judge Julie Manning said there was "a credibility issue" surrounding the allegation and that no evidence had been produced to show hacking had taken place.

The judge granted a motion sought by Mr Coan compelling Mr Dunne to produce the emails, which were sought under a subpoena a year ago.

A copy of the order is to be served on Google and telecommunications provider AT&T.

Mr Dunne has been instructed to authorise those companies to retrieve the emails sought by the bankruptcy trustee.

The judge also ordered that Mr Dunne cover costs incurred by the trustee in bringing the motion.

Mr Coan said Mr Dunne had not produced any emails in response to a subpoena seeking access to various records about his business dealings.

He said other witnesses had provided him with emails Mr Dunne exchanged with his wife, his son John, financial consultant James Ryan, building industry cost consultant Andy Smyth and New York construction firm director Sean Doyle.

These emails related to the operations of two real estate development companies, Mountbrook USA and JDDC Construction, as well as building projects in Greenwich, Connecticut and Grand Street in New York.

Mr Dunne and his wife moved to the US in 2010.

Earlier this year it emerged they had legally separated.

Irish Independent

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