Bankrupt developer paid £120k as consultant
BANKRUPT developer Bernard McNamara managed to earn £120,000 (€138,000) a year in consultancy fees after he moved to London to escape his £1bn mountain of debts following his disastrous property speculation.
The former Fianna Fail councillor's bankruptcy filing to a UK court also shows he estimated his monthly outgoings in London at £4,368 including £800 to lease a new car.
Mr McNamara went bankrupt in the UK last November after moving there two years earlier. He had previously insisted he would never leave Ireland even if he were forced to leave his Ailesbury Road mansion and move to a camp site in Doolin, Co Clare.
Despite his bravado, Mr McNamara did what almost every other bust developer has done and moved overseas to benefit from less onerous bankruptcy laws. He wound up in a three-bedroom house in the London suburb of Chiswick with under-floor heating and a rent of £1,500 (€1,740) a week.
The developer's spending habits were revealed in court documents obtained by the 'Sunday Times' following a legal battle, which saw Mr McNamara try unsuccessfully to block access to his court filings by "prurient" reporters.
The report shows Mr McNamara paid rent for two years in advance when he first rented his Chiswick home and shelled out another £1,000 on Fulham Football Club including two season tickets, which helped him to establish that he was resident in the English capital.
Despite earning £10,000 a month from his consultancy, Mr McNamara told the courts that he had just £800 in cash and a further £8,000 in his bank account when he went bankrupt in November. Among his assets were two premium seats in Croke Park and eight premium seats in the Aviva Stadium for rugby matches.
He left behind debts totalling £1.01bn including about £679.6m in debt which was not secured against any asset. The remaining £333.5m was secured against his assets, Mr McNamara said.
Court documents also contain extensive correspondence between Mr McNamara and his various banks as well as the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA).