McFeely's bankruptcy bid put on hold in London
PROPERTY developer and former IRA hunger striker Tom McFeely has had his bankruptcy proceedings in Britain halted by a London court.
Mr McFeely is trying to get his case heard in England because he could apply to have the bankruptcy discharged after just a year and be free to trade again.
But he could be bankrupted for up to 12 years and barred from acting as a company director if it happens here.
Yesterday, a London judge sent the case back to the High Court in Dublin because this is where proceedings were first issued against him by Theresa McGuinness.
Ms McGuinness, from Rush, Co Dublin, had successfully appealed to the High Court in London last month to overturn a UK bankruptcy declaration given to Mr McFeely in January.
Yesterday, the judge ruled that the Irish court should get the "first bite of the cherry" as Ms McGuinness started her petition against the property developer last July.
Depending on the outcome in the High Court here, the issue could be revisited in the UK.
Speaking about the proceedings in London, where Mr McFeely has a petition against him by Nicholas Miller, a former trustee of his company, the judge said: "I propose to stay this petition until the Irish court has ruled."
James Couser, representing Mr Miller, indicated he would be appealing the decision so he could still proceed on behalf of his client. That will take place at a later date.
At a hearing in London last month Ms Justice Proudman overturned Mr McFeely's bid to have his case heard there and said he did not have the right to "forum shop" to decide where he was declared bankrupt. He claimed it was a breach of his human rights.
Mr McFeely served 12 years in the Maze Prison for shooting an RUC officer in Derry.