Saturday 26 May 2018

'Drummer' dragged back into spotlight

Former chief had been keeping head down

Former chief executive of Anglo Irish Bank David Drumm
Former chief executive of Anglo Irish Bank David Drumm
David Drumm with Peter Fitzgerald and John Bowe

Dearbhail McDonald, Legal Editor

THE 'Drummer' has benefited hugely from the old idiom out of sight, out of mind.

But today's Anglo tapes draw David Drumm, the unlikely former CEO of Anglo Irish Bank, firmly back centre stage.

He has always had a colourful turn of phrase – just three weeks before the infamous bank guarantee, Mr Drumm instructed 600 staff to celebrate in style at the Mansion House in Dublin.

"This is Anglo, so there is only one thing to do – party!" Mr Drumm emailed staff as the bank teetered on the brink of collapse.

We have heard relatively little recently about his role during the ill-fated bank guarantee.

Mr Drumm was ousted as Anglo CEO in December 2008, later moving with his family to Boston in the US.

To date, Mr Drumm has not faced any criminal charges in relation to Anglo's collapse.

It is doubtful if Mr Drumm, who fears he would be subjected to a "witchhunt" if he returned to Ireland, would voluntarily accept an invitation to return and meet with investigators.

Mr Drumm had been engaged in long-running negotiations with Anglo when he filed for bankruptcy in Boston October 2010.

The negotiations with his former employer, which by then was state owned, centred on debts of more than €8.5m – most of which was used to buy shares in the bank ahead of its collapse.

The two sides failed to reach an agreement and Mr Drumm, who said he offered up his pension, filed for bankruptcy.

The IBRC (formerly Anglo and now in special liquidation) and the trustee liquidating Mr Drumm's bankruptcy estate are suing him, claiming that he fraudulently failed to disclose money and property transfers to his wife.


Mr Drumm disputes the allegations.

Owing to complex talks surrounding discovery (legal exchange of documents), Mr Drumm's bankruptcy trial may not be heard until January 2014.

And we may hear less still about his affairs if he settles his case with IBRC – who could drop all litigation in lieu of an agreement.

Irish Independent

Business Newsletter

Read the leading stories from the world of Business.

Also in Business