Friday 24 May 2019

Central Bank can have suspension extended for mortgage centre boss

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Tim Healy

The Central Bank has secured a High Court order extending a suspension notice against the MD of Dundalk-based European Mortgage Call Centre, pending a fitness and probity investigation after complaints by two clients.

The complaints include alleged failure to return, or return in full, monies paid for mortgage deposits despite mortgage approval having not been secured.

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President of the High Court, Mr Justice Peter Kelly, said he was satisfied extending the validity of the suspension for another three months of James Cumiskey, of Siabh na Glough, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, was necessary with a view to protecting the public pending completion of the regulator's investigation within the three months.

The judge stressed, as had Central Bank counsel, that Mr Cumiskey has not yet had an opportunity of appearing before the Central Bank. There was also a reference to his having medical difficulties. Mr Cumiskey was not in court but counsel said solicitors intended to come on record and indicated there would be consent to the firm not practicing pending the investigation.

In seeking the extension of the suspension, Paul Anthony McDermott SC, for the Central Bank, said European Mortgage Call Centre is authorised by the Central Bank as an investment and insurance intermediary but not as a mortgage intermediary.

The judge said the Central Bank has functions on fitness and probity requirements for individuals who perform controlled functions in regulated firms.

In this case, it was alleged substantial sums were given to Mr Cumiskey and he has not dealt with those for purpose required and has not returned them in full.

Pending investigation, the bank can issue a suspension notice to protect consumers and the court was satisfied to grant the bank's application extend the suspension, the judge said.

Irish Independent

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