Thursday 15 November 2018

DPP to examine file on Anglo's 'Maple 10' deals

Gardai 'confident' of getting prosecutions

Fiach Kelly and Fionnan Sheahan

A FILE will be sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) today on the so-called "Maple 10" Anglo Irish transactions, where a "golden circle" of investors bought shares formerly controlled by businessman Sean Quinn.

DPP James Hamilton will also receive another file today on four prime suspects in the investigation into the "back-to-back" loans between Anglo and Irish Life & Permanent (IL&P).

Justice Minister Dermot Ahern yesterday said gardai were confident of securing prosecutions. Investigations into loans to directors will continue into the new year. Mr Ahern added that there were more suspects in other aspects of the investigation into Anglo.

He said the back-to-back investigation, which looked at the transfer of €7.2bn between Anglo and IL&P for the benefit of Anglo at the end of its financial year in 2008, was the largest probe.

"It relates to the transfer of monies, it relates to market manipulation, deception," he said. "There's four major suspects basically that are involved in that particular investigation."

Investigators are confident of securing prosecutions, but "the Garda's confidence is one thing, the DPP may have a different view," Mr Ahern added.

The investigation into Anglo-Irish Bank has been the biggest in the history of the State, he said, and 42 volumes of evidence, comprising hundreds of pages, have been assembled.


Mr Ahern would not say if the four suspects in the back-to-back investigations were former directors of financial institutions.

Two arrests have been made -- former chief executive Sean FitzPatrick and financial director William McAteer -- but no charges have yet been brought.

The main issues dealt with in the investigation are "market manipulation, deception, the issue of loans to directors under corporate law, transactions not being properly notified to the regulator".

Two senior counsel and one junior counsel have been working on an almost full-time basis with investigators, and have also liaised with the DPP.

"It's important that people are at least assured that work is ongoing, this is not an easy investigation," Mr Ahern said, adding the Government wanted people "brought to book".

He also said that new legislation beefing up powers to tackle white-collar crime would be passed before the next election.

Earlier in Brussels, Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny said the garda files to be passed to the DPP called for prosecutions against "less than half-a-dozen" individuals.

It is understood that he was basing this on information obtained by Fine Gael that four Anglo staff face charges on foot of the garda file.

He said he did not know the identity of those who might face charges. Mr Kenny also did not disclose where his party obtained this information and said he didn't know the exact details.

Irish Independent

Business Newsletter

Read the leading stories from the world of Business.

Also in Business