Wednesday 21 February 2018

Console got funds after loss of charity tax status

Interim Console CEO David Hall Photo: Collins Courts
Interim Console CEO David Hall Photo: Collins Courts

Dearbhail McDonald and Maeve Sheehan

The Government continued to fund disgraced charity Console's bereavement counselling service, even though its charity tax status had expired.

The Sunday Independent has learned that Console's authorisation under the charitable donation scheme expired on June 16, 2015 during an internal HSE audit into the organisation's finances.

The Revenue Commissioners wrote to Console last week, notifying the organisation that Console Suicide Bereavement Counselling Limited had been removed from the Revenue's list of bodies approved to claim tax relief on charitable donations. The charity is currently under investigation for lavish spending of its funds by Paul Kelly, his wife Patricia and their son Tim.

Interim Console CEO David Hall is also investigating if charity funds were used in the purchase of a €20,000 horse.

The luxury cars bought by the charity for the use of Mr Kelly and his wife will be auctioned on Tuesday.

Meanwhile it has been claimed that the charity's founder, Paul Kelly, landed a job as a social worker in Cumbria, England in 1982 - a year before he was prosecuted for impersonating a doctor.

Angela Cummins, now retired, said she worked with him for several months until he left suddenly after his colleagues had raised concerns.

In an interview, she said Kelly asked "What are case notes?" and appeared overwhelmed by the work.

Sunday Independent

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