Business Irish

Sunday 19 November 2017

O'Connell tackles ex-rugby manager over property deal

Tim Healy

Rugby star Paul O'Connell is among more than 60 investors pursuing former Irish rugby team manager Pat Whelan and another businessman for €13.4m in loans for a property development at London's Earls Court.

It is alleged that Mr O'Connell invested €100,000 in the project, while other investors, most with addresses in Limerick but also including people from counties Dublin, Kilkenny, Clare and Meath, invested sums between €50,000 and €300,000.

The proceedings were admitted to the Commercial Court yesterday by Mr Justice Peter Kelly who agreed to adjourn them for several weeks to facilitate talks between the sides.


Seeking the adjournment, Frank Callanan, for a number of investors, said a proposal had been made to his clients which they wished to consider.

Mr Justice Kelly has admitted three sets of proceedings by individual investors and companies to the Commercial Court, all arising from a planned property development at Earl's Court.

The case is against Pat Whelan, of Hollybank, O'Connell Avenue, Limerick, and Pat Chesser, of Newcastle, Castletroy, Co Limerick. It relates to the raising between March 2007 and April 2008 of "mezzanine" finance of some €13.4m for the development.

The proceedings involving Mr O'Connell are also against Steamboat Developments Ltd (SDL), Dock Road, Limerick, in addition to Mr Whelan and Mr Chesser.

The plaintiffs in that case include 11 individuals who have brought the action jointly with Wealth Options Trustees Ltd in their capacity as trustees of their individual pension schemes.

Davy Crest Nominees Ltd is also a plaintiff in that case and has brought the action jointly with Mr O'Connell in his capacity as trustee of Mr O'Connell's individual pension scheme.

It is alleged that Mr O'Connell was among a number of individuals who invested a total of €1.84m of the overall sum of €13.4m.

Irish Independent

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