Wednesday 22 November 2017

Desmond fails again in tribunal fraud claim

Tim Healy

Dermot Desmond has failed in a bid to have High Court and Supreme Court decisions over the conduct of the Moriarty Tribunal set aside.

The millionaire businessman sought declarations that the High Court, in 2003, and the Supreme Court, in a 2004 appeal, had been misled by reason of fraud on behalf of the tribunal.

Yesterday, the High Court's Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne said she was satisfied that Mr Desmond's case, taken at its height, had not alleged fraud in the true sense or that his statement of claim disclosed a reasonable cause of action.

It arose out of separate judicial review proceedings brought by Mr Desmond against the tribunal over the use (by the tribunal) of a 1993 report over the ownership of the Johnston Mooney and O'Brien site in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4.

The Glackin Report made findings critical of Mr Desmond. Arising out of the use by the tribunal of the Glackin Report, Mr Desmond brought judicial review proceedings claiming the tribunal had not afforded him fair procedures because the contents of the report were not relevant.

He also claimed inadequate notice about the likelihood of witnesses being examined about the report meant his ability to defend himself was compromised. The high and supreme courts both dismissed those proceedings.

Yesterday, Ms Justice Dunne said there was "simply nothing" in Mr Desmond's latest case which alleged fraud in the true sense or which satisfied the requirement for setting aside the previous judgments of those two courts, the judge said.

Irish Independent

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