independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Frustrations boil over as Aoife fights to maintain composure

IT all took place in the blink of an eye.

Within five minutes or maybe 10, the Quinn sisters had dissolved a total of seven Cypriot companies and "disposed" of the shares of the Russian subsidiaries – that crucially held the assets.

Aoife Quinn claimed the meeting took place in April 2011. She couldn't exactly remember but thought this meeting passing four resolutions was held in her own home or at one of her sister's in Dublin – or maybe in an office of one of the Quinn companies.

They did not have a single document in front of them and off the top of their heads, did not know the amount of assets involved.

Was this credible? Mr Justice Peter Kelly asked. Was it credible to make decisions of this sort without a single bit of paper in front of them and to be able to resolve all these things without documents?

"Absolutely," Aoife shot back firmly and without hesitation.

If you think about the circumstances in which this had arisen and the circumstances in their defence of this action it was "absolutely credible", she said.

For two long days in the witness box, the 30-year-old law graduate had maintained her composure, stayed business-like, endeavoured to explain. But this was close to the bone.

It had been a long day and the patient Mr Justice Kelly was clearly having some difficulty with her evidence.

Aoife did not know the assets involved and much to the frustration of Paul Gallagher, for the IBRC, the documents she had disclosed were all 'formal' papers relating to the appointments of various boards and power of attorney but nothing at all to do with the actual operations of the Russian companies.

"My evidence is that all documents have been fully disclosed. You're putting me under pressure," said Aoife eventually to Mr Gallagher.

"You were passing resolutions with no documents before you proporting to the disposal of assets?" Mr Justice Kelly said again.

"This was very much a reactive step to Anglo's take-over of our company and widespread manipulation of the share price in an effort to save themselves," Aoife replied, with a fraction more heat than she had hitherto displayed.

"Now the speech is over, your evidence is that not a single document was before you," Mr Justice Kelly said crisply, putting an end to the dramatics.

Irish Independent

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