McGeever denies buying home with proceeds of crime
Published 28/04/2016 | 02:30
A former property developer who faked his own kidnapping has denied he bought his Galway mansion with the proceeds of crime.
Kevin McGeever said "define crime", during a court hearing into whether he has the means to pay a €1.17m judgment debt registered against him last year by investor James Byrne, over property in Dubai sold by Mr McGeever's KMM Intel Properties.
He claimed the reported €4.5m he paid to buy and refurbish the mansion named 'Nirvana' in Craughwell, Co Galway, came from 30 years of working every day and not drinking or smoking.
Mr McGeever was under cross-examination in the Master's Court as part of efforts by Mr Byrne requiring the 71-year-old businessman to divulge his assets so that the debt could be recovered.
Mr McGeever claimed he had a friend with business interests in Hong Kong and Singapore who would provide him with the money for the Byrne debt and the friend would later recover the money as part of any future business deals he and Mr McGeever had.
"I don't need to be here (in court)," he said.
Andrew Robinson BL, for Mr Byrne, said he had become "a bit of a celebrity" in recent weeks following his conviction and two-years suspended sentence for wasting garda time.
McGeever had claimed he was kidnapped by creditors who held him for eight months before he turned up on a roadside and was picked up by a passing motorist.
Counsel put it to him that he had promised last December to pay the debt by March but had not done so.
Earlier, asked about a Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) investigation into the source of funding for Nirvana, Mr McGeever asked "where has it gone, it has not gone anywhere. CAB has not lodged papers or charged me with anything".
He also asked if there was a suggestion that it came from the proceeds of crime. "What do you mean by crime, what are you talking about, am I a drug dealer?"
When counsel said he was wanted by the FBI and Interpol, he said that was "going back 30 years".
He also added: "I named it Nirvana because it was to be a place of peace and tranquillity, not after the band."