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McKillen renews action with Barclays next week

A legal challenge in London will throw a unique spotlight on to the business affairs of two of the biggest Celtic Tiger-era developers when it gets under way next week.

It comes as the increasingly bitter dispute between Irish developer Paddy McKillen and billionaire investors David and Frederick Barclay for control of Coroin finally comes to trail in London.

Coroin is the company that owns London's luxurious Claridge, Connaught and Berkeley hotels, known as the Maybourne Group.

Mr McKillen has taken the case in an effort to block a takeover of Coroin by the Barclays, who have bought shares in the business as well as some of its loans in a "pincer movement" to squeeze out other shareholders. The Irish Independent has learned that Mr McKillen is expected to take the stand at the High Court in London on Monday.

His former partner in Coroin, Derek Quinlan, will take the stand on March 30 and April 2.

Both men's personal wealth and financial affairs are set to come under intense scrutiny.

The court is seeking to understand the extent of Mr McKillen's wealth and test his ability to raise enough cash to buy Coroin if he can block the Barclay's bid.

It also wants details of the extent to which NAMA debtor Mr Quinlan's lifestyle is being supported by the Barclays.

Mr McKillen has been assured that his financial details will not be made public despite being used as evidence in the case, but the case is expected to throw up a wealth of information about the recent activities of both men.

Representatives of NAMA are also scheduled to give evidence.

Irish Independent