Wednesday 21 August 2019

€250,000 accidentally lodged into man's mortgage account, court hears

Ulster Bank's headquarters in Dublin
Ulster Bank's headquarters in Dublin

Aodhan O'Faolain

A MAN allegedly had €250,000 accidently lodged into his mortgage account shortly before he sold his property, the High Court heard.

Ulster Bank has secured a temporary freezing order against Haris Shaikh arising out of the matter.

Mr Shaikh, who formerly lived in Clonsilla in Dublin but who no longer resides in Ireland, owes just over €250,000 arising out of a mortgage he had with the lender, the bank claims.

The freezing order prevents Mr Shaikh, his agents or anyone acting on his behalf from dissipating, reducing or removing from the State any funds or assets below a value of €251,000.

It was granted to the bank, which made an ex-parte (one side only represented) application, by Mr Justice Paul Gilligan.

Rudi Newman Bl, for the bank, said Mr Shaikh borrowed €320,000 from the bank in 2005 which was used to purchase a property at Lime Lawn Glade, Clonsilla, Dublin.

In 2014, Mr Shaikh decided to sell the property.

Some €309,000 was owing on the mortgage when the property was put on the market.

Counsel said what had happened in this case was an "innocent third party" had mistakenly lodged €250,000 into Mr  Shaikh's mortgage account, and not their own account.

The mistake was not picked up on for a time.

In error, the bank thought the balance outstanding on Mr Shaikh's mortgage was reduced to €57,000.

It claims that amount was paid off after the property was sold earlier this year for some €325,000.

The remaining proceeds of the sale were lodged in the client account of Mr Shaikh's solicitor, and the mortgage was considered by the bank to have been redeemed. 

Counsel said it is the bank's case Mr Shaikh now owes it some €250,000.

The bank had spoken to Mr Shaikh's solicitors about the matter, but the firm said in reply that it has no instructions from their client.

Counsel said Mr Shaikh had no assets in the jurisdiction.

Mr Justice Gilligan said he was satisfied to grant the order and made the matter returnable to next week.

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