Sunday 8 December 2019

Paddy McKillen tells London High Court Barclay brothers showed 'no mercy'

Brian Farmer and reporters

A PROPERTY developer today told a London High Court judge that firms controlled by two of the UK's best-known businessmen had tried to "put my wife and children out of a home".

Patrick McKillen told Mr Justice David Richards that companies run by Sir David Barclay and his twin brother, Sir Frederick, had "no mercy".

He was giving evidence during a trial in London which started after a boardroom battle over control of a company which owns three London hotels spilled into the High Court.

All three men were investors in Coroin - a company which owns Claridges, the Connaught and the Berkeley hotels, Mr Justice David Richards has heard during a trial which started in March.

Mr McKillen, from Belfast, has taken legal action against the Barclay brothers and claims that "company affairs" were conducted in a "manner unfairly prejudicial to his interests".

But the Barclay brothers, who own the Daily Telegraph, deny allegations of "unlawful" behaviour and say Mr McKillen is trying to "tarnish" their reputations and "embarrass" them.

"The Barclay interests were trying to buy my debt and put my wife and children out of a home," Mr McKillen told the judge today.

"That was their game plan. They have no mercy."

Media-shy Mr McKillen faces questions this week over his long-standing relationship with a company set up by the former British prime minister Tony Blair as part of his legal action against the Barclay brothers.

Legal representatives for the brothers earlier told the High Court that they had received "unsatisfactory" information about the nature of the relationship between the Belfast-born businessman and the consultancy firm set up by Mr Blair.

Tony Blair Associates is a company which provides advice on political and economic matters.

The link came to light during discussions over the disclosure of documents in the High Court.

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