Not guilty: FitzPatrick thanks family for support during years of 'great personal difficulty'
FORMER Anglo Irish bank chairman Sean FitzPatrick has walked free from court after being found not guilty of giving illegal loans to the so-called Maple 10 to buy shares in the back.
The jury returned the majority verdict at the Circuit Criminal Court in Dublin after deliberating for 13 hours 29 minutes hours.
Mr FitzPatrick smiled and shock hands with legal team as trial judge Martin Nolan discharged him.
After his acquittal on all counts Sean FitzPatrick issued a brief statement to the media thanking the jury for finding him not guilty and asking for privacy.
Before reading from a prepared statement on the steps of the Criminal Courts of Justice he asked the media scrum to move back and said that the would be answering no questions because the trial is continuing against his co-accused.
“First of all I would like to thank my wife, my two sons and my daughter and my sister who have supported me, not only during this trial, but for the past six years of great personal difficultly," he said.
"I would of course especially like to thank my legal team. solicitor Michael Staines, Senior Counsel Michael O’Higgins, Junior Counsel John Fitzgerald and Gavin McCormack for their dedication and hard work.
"I would like also to especially thank the women and men of the jury who found me not guilty of all charges.
"To all my friends, who have stood by me and in particular two very special friends, I will always be truly grateful for their support during this very difficult time.
"I now simply ask that the courtesy, which has been extended to me and my family during this trial by the media, will be maintained and the privacy of my family which has been intruded on over the past six years will now cease. Thank you very much ladies and gentlemen.”
The seven women and five men will continue its deliberations tomorrow on charges against ex-bankers Pat Whelan and William McAteer.
They deny providing unlawful financial assistance to 16 individuals as part of the plan to unwind Sean Quinn’s secret stake in the bank.
Trial judge Martin Nolan previously directed that Mr FitzPatrick be found not guilty in connection with the loans to the Quinn family because there was no evidence against him.
He also cleared Mr Whelan of seven counts relating to facility letters to the Maple 10.
Following his statement Mr FitzPatrick walked to waiting taxi and refused to answer any questions.