Sunday 20 October 2019

Ex-K Club manager faces €500,000 costs over case

Last week, the judge dismissed the case against all the defendants and ruled Mr Curran had not been threatened at the Punchestown races seven years ago. Stock image
Last week, the judge dismissed the case against all the defendants and ruled Mr Curran had not been threatened at the Punchestown races seven years ago. Stock image

Tim Healy

A former K Club manager who lost his action against Dr Michael Smurfit, the club and one of its employees will have to pay all the legal costs of the case.

Peter Curran faces a possible bill of up to €500,000 after the 28-day High Court action. The legal teams on the Smurfit and K Club sides alone included four senior counsel, as well as junior counsel and solicitors.

Mr Justice Anthony Barr was told Mr Curran (51), from Cahirsiveen, Co Kerry, has no assets and is "impecunious". The judge said the court "must effectively be blind" as to whether the parties are wealthy or poor. There was no basis in law, justice or logic why the normal rule of "costs follow the event" (loser pays) should not apply, he said.

Last week, the judge dismissed the case against all the defendants and ruled Mr Curran had not been threatened at the Punchestown races seven years ago. The judge also found Mr Curran had sent five bogus emails in an attempt to entice the K Club superintendent Gerry Byrne, whom he alleged made a threat to him at the races in 2011, into making an "inculpatory statement".

This would also falsely incriminate club owner and millionaire businessman Dr Smurfit.

Irish Independent

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