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Anglo to lose €14m on Paddy Kelly investment

Anglo Irish Bank will take a 33pc haircut on a parcel of land it's selling in Florida that was acquired by developer Paddy Kelly in 2004 for $60m (€42m).

It's believed that the state-owned bank has agreed in principle to sell the land to US property developer Zeb Portanova, who must complete the deal to buy the 15-acre site by September 1. It's understood that a $40m (€28m) purchase price has been agreed. The site, Sarasota Quay, was to incorporate a landmark $1bn (€707m) commercial and residential development.

Despite Anglo Irish Bank's effort to sell the site, it has been reported that Mr Portanova may struggle to meet the September 1 deadline.

Two former partners of another planned $1bn development in Sarasota, the Proscenium, have filed a legal action against Mr Portanova in Florida. They claim he defaulted on a deal to pay them nearly $5m. In April, Cadence Bank filed a $3m foreclosure suit against Mr Portanova and the Proscenium.

The Sarasota land owned by Mr Kelly became the subject of legal action more than a year ago. Irish American Management Services (IAM), the company behind the planned development of the site, was backed by Mr Kelly, John McCabe of McCabe Construction, and John Walsh, a long-time investment partner of Mr Kelly. Legal action was taken by Bussoleno, registered in the British Virgin Islands, seeking foreclosure in January last year on mortgages it granted IAM for parcels of land at Sarasota. Bussoleno claimed that IAM was delinquent on $7.7m in loans.

This week, Bussoleno brought a legal action in Ireland against the three men to enforce a $5.77m judgment granted in the dispute by a court in Florida. Legal representatives for Bussoleno told the Commercial Court that the company was concerned that Mr Kelly was subject to debt-recovery proceedings and that he had said his liabilities may exceed his assets.

Bussoleno is a trust for the children of Rene Gareau, a Canadian citizen who had a 40-year friendship with Mr Kelly. The pair had been holidaying in Sardinia in 1999 when the Mr Gareau asked Mr Kelly if he would like to invest in the Sarasota project.

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