Business Irish

Monday 20 November 2017

My investment didn't bring down Anglo, says Quinn

John Mulligan

John Mulligan

FORMER billionaire Sean Quinn has dismissed rumours of a family feud and insisted his reckless investment in Anglo Irish Bank didn't help to collapse the institution.

The once media-shy Mr Quinn has been attempting to court public opinion as his son languishes in prison for contempt of court and his family is pursued for the repayment of some €2.8bn in loans by Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, formerly Anglo Irish Bank.

"Nothing could be further from the truth," said Mr Quinn of the speculation about a rift in the family as nephew Peter Darragh Quinn remains at large in Northern Ireland.

"I have absolutely no idea where that would have come from because Peter Quinn (Peter Darragh Quinn's father) would always have been extremely supportive of me and all the family and vice versa and our side of the family would be very supportive of Peter."

Mr Quinn, speaking yesterday on RTE radio, added that he had spoken to Peter Quinn Snr, who is his brother, "twice or three times" in the past week or so.

"I didn't ask him, I just said hopefully Petey's alright and he says he is. He's very disappointed; however, he's okay."

'Inappropriate'

Mr Quinn said that "for the time being" he hadn't attempted to contact Peter Darragh Quinn and that it would be "inappropriate" to do so while contempt issues remained to be resolved.

"If our solicitors want me to contact Petey, I'll do it. But at the minute I've decided I'll mind my own business."

Asked if he was disappointed by his nephew's decision to evade prison, Mr Quinn said he could "easily understand it".

"To be put in the situation that he was in is an extremely, extremely difficult situation. He resigned in February. Once Anglo issued contempt proceedings, Petey resigned within 24 hours," he said.

"And he worked tirelessly from that until last Friday -- for five months -- trying to make sure he would be able to explain to the court what happened.

"I would never be critical of Petey because Petey done what he felt was right for our family and I would appreciate that and thank him for that," he said.

The Quinn family have been labelled "dishonest and deceitful" by the High Court after they attempted to put worldwide assets beyond the reach of IBRC.

Asked how he felt about the public perception of Anglo now, he said he felt the bank had "sold a tremendous story".

"Everybody hated Anglo. Now all of a sudden people are saying, hold on a minute, Anglo is doing good work here trying to get this money back off Quinn.

"They've turned the whole thing on its head."

Mr Quinn conceded that it was "right and proper" that he was effectively sacked by the financial regulator as the chairman of Quinn Direct for borrowing money from the company to buy shares in Anglo Irish Bank.

But he said his decision to covertly amass a large chunk of shares in the bank had "zero effect" on the bank losing billions of euro.

Irish Independent

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