Tuesday 17 September 2019

NAMA secures court orders to freeze McCabe family assets

Aodhan O'Faolain, Ray Managh, John Mulligan

NAMA has secured a number of High Court orders freezing the assets of developer John McCabe and members of his family.

The agency expressed fears that €6.2m of assets have been "misappropriated or dissipated" by Mr McCabe and his family, as well as their companies, without NAMA's consent.

The McCabes, whose group of companies are indebted to NAMA for more than €235m, have denied the claims.

Yesterday at the High Court, Judge Patrick McCarthy granted NAMA a number of temporary Mareva injunctions -- freezing the assets of John McCabe Snr and his wife Mary of Rath Stud, Asbourne, Co Meath.

Similar orders were obtained against their children John McCabe Jnr, Helen McCarthy, and Angela, Pauline and Sandra McCabe, all with addresses at Rath Lodge, Asbourne.

Under the terms of the injunctions the McCabes cannot dispose, sell or transfer any asset worth more than €5,000 that any of them has a legal or beneficial interest in.

They are further prevented from doing anything to obstruct NAMA from recovering debts against the defendants.

The disputed money includes €1.43m in rent allegedly misappropriated from a unit at Ashbourne Business Park in Co Meath. A further €1.4m was allegedly paid to directors of a company called McCabe Builders (Dublin), which is in receivership and liquidation.

A further €933,000 in rent paid by the McEniff hotel group in relation to the Ardmore Hotel in Glasnevin, Dublin, has also allegedly been misappropriated.

NAMA also alleged that equity totalling €1.7m was released from a London apartment at Park Lane and Rath Stud. Equity in both properties had been promised to NAMA, the agency claims.

The agency alleges that €4.9m of the funds misappropriated by the McCabes have been used to pay a company called Western Gulf Advisory (WGA) in the Middle East.

WGA is thought to have intimated that it could engineer loans for the McCabe group. The McCabes are thought to have paid as much as €6m to date to WGA.

NAMA reviewed a business plan from the McCabe group of companies in 2010 and last September approved working capital facilities of €12.6m.

Lawyers for the McCabes had opposed NAMA's application. Martin Canny for Mr and Mrs McCabe and four of their children denied any wrong doing.

Lawyers for Ms McCarthy said she was a stranger to the allegations who had resigned her directorships of the various McCabe companies, and had nothing to do with the dissipation of assets.

In his ruling Mr Justice McCarthy said he was satisfied from the evidence before him to grant the injunctions sought.

The judge said the orders would only remain in place until Friday.

Irish Independent

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