Monday 29 December 2014

IBRC now 'my greatest enemy' -- Quinn daughter

Tim Healy

Published 09/11/2012 | 05:00

Ciara Quinn was speaking in the Commercial Court, opposing orders requiring some members of her family to hand over their personal email account passwords and other information to a receiver.

A DAUGHTER of jailed bankrupt businessman Sean Quinn has described the former Anglo Irish Bank as "my greatest enemy of all time".

Ciara Quinn was speaking in the Commercial Court, opposing orders requiring some members of her family to hand over their personal email account passwords and other information to a receiver.

Photographs of her three children had even been sought as part of the information request, she told the court.

Ms Quinn and other members of her family strongly opposed receiver Declan Taite's application for their passwords and financial information dating back two years on grounds including the rights to privacy -- of themselves and those with whom they communicate.

Mr Quinn's son-in-law, Niall McPartland, said it was legally and morally wrong to allow accountants and lawyers access to personal communications and photos.

The family were also concerned that information could be passed to the bank which could assist its defence of the family's action alleging that loans of €2.34bn were made unlawfully by Anglo -- now the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC) -- to Quinn companies, he said.

Michael Collins SC, for Mr Taite, said the orders were a necessary part of efforts to trace the movement of assets in the Quinn family's international property group (IPG) and that his side undertook that privileged and irrelevant material would not be used.

Barry O'Donnell, for the bank, undertook not to examine personal information and that any material would be used only for the proceedings aimed at recovering assets and would not be disclosed to others without leave of the court.

Ms Quinn said that six days after receivers took over her bank accounts last September, details of those accounts were published in the 'Sunday Business Post'.

"Only the receivers could have done that and I take their undertaking with a pinch of salt," she said. "I have absolutely no belief in any undertaking by Anglo Irish Bank through their agents or receivers."

As a mother of three small children, she said, it "has to be wrong" to be required to provide photos of them and other personal and family information to "my greatest enemy of all time".


Stephen Kelly, a son-in-law of Mr Quinn, said that within days of information concerning him being given to the receiver, he was contacted by a journalist about it.

Both Mr Collins and Mr O'Donnell said they wished to put on record that neither the receiver nor the bank were involved in any leaking to the media of information concerning the Quinns.

Mr Justice Peter Kelly said he required time to address the issues raised and would rule on the matter today.

IRBC secured orders last July, appointing Mr Taite receiver over the personal assets of the Quinn children and three of their spouses -- Stephen Kelly, Niall McPartland and Karen Woods -- following allegations of a conspiracy to put assets beyond the bank's reach.

Mr Taite later applied for orders requiring the Quinns to hand over all books and records concerning their financial assets, including their personal email passwords.

Yesterday, Mr Collins urged the judge to make the orders requiring disclosure of the material.

Mr Collins noted the Quinn defendants' concerns about material being passed to IBRC but said they had misunderstood the role of the receiver. A protocol which would address concerns about privileged information had been proposed.

Mr McPartland said the bid for access to personal email accounts was "extraordinary" and that the Quinns were entitled to protect "whatever bit of privacy we have left".

Aoife Quinn, Ciara Quinn and Stephen Kelly voiced similar concerns.

Also yesterday, Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne was told that Sean Quinn Jnr was doing all he can to purge his contempt of court orders restraining the stripping of assets from the IPG but could not repay a US$500,000 sum (€392,000) as sought by the bank.

The judge agreed to a request by Shane Murphy SC, for IBRC, to adjourn matters against Mr Quinn Jnr for two weeks in light of correspondence with him concerning disclosure of assets.

Irish Independent

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