Saturday 23 September 2017

Former PA to U2 star owned 22 horses, court hears

U2's
Adam Clayton
arriving at the
court yesterday
U2's Adam Clayton arriving at the court yesterday

Nicola Donnelly

THE former personal assistant of U2's Adam Clayton -- who is accused of stealing nearly €3m from him -- owned up to 22 thoroughbred racehorses with her former husband, a court heard yesterday.

Carol Hawkins and John Hawkins, who was employed as Mr Clayton's driver at the time, were on a joint salary of €48,000 in 2006 when 17 of the horses, including racehorses and brood mares, were owned through their company, Plato Racing.

Ms Hawkins (48) has pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to 181 counts of theft from Mr Clayton between 2004 and 2008. The alleged thefts totalled €2,862,567.

John Barrett, a director of Sean Barrett Bloodstock Insurance Ltd, told prosecuting counsel Colm O'Briain: "John Hawkins was described as the owner of the horses and I dealt with Carol Hawkins in relation to insurance of the horses."

In 2006 he received an email from Ms Hawkins, of Lower Rathmines Road, Dublin, stating that all of the horses except three were now owned by John and Carol Hawkins under Plato Racing.

The total sum insured on the horses was €320,500, with an annual premium in 2006 of €10,460.

Ms Hawkins emailed Mr Barrett on November 15, 2007. She said she and John had separated, that she was now the sole owner of a horse named Adorabella and that Plato Racing was finished.

Under cross-examination, Mr Barrett said that he had met Ms Hawkins and her former husband "a few times" at race meetings in Leopardstown.

Mr Clayton, who attended court earlier in the day, is expected to give evidence early next week.

Irish Independent

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