Saturday 7 December 2019

Quinn fails to tell court how €340,000 was spent

Brian Hutton

A daughter of bankrupt tycoon Sean Quinn has no records of how she spent nearly €340,000 withdrawn from cash machines in less than a year, she told a court.

Ciara Quinn agreed that on one occasion last May she withdrew €5,000 in 17 minutes in seven separate transactions at an ATM in Blanchardstown, Dublin. But she could not tell the Commercial Court how she spent that money.

The former nurse said she believed most of it went on legal fees, but she had no receipts as she handed it over on a monthly basis to her siblings.

Asked by Judge Peter Kelly who the "wads of cash" were passed to, she said her sister Aoife and brother Sean Jnr.

Ms Quinn said she went through €339,921 from her Russian bank account between July 2011 and May 2012.

The money had been paid into the Ocean Bank in Moscow as a salary from the Quinn family's property empire and she had travelled to the Russian capital with family to open the account. That trip was paid for by Finanstroy, a company belonging to the Quinn property group, IPG.

Ms Quinn said she usually withdrew the money, over the 11-month period, from a Bank of Ireland ATM in Blanchardstown using a Visa card.

Judge Kelly said the withdrawals were the equivalent of nearly €1,000 a day, and asked if there was no withdrawal limit at the ATM. Ms Quinn said: "No, I don't think so."

Asked about her paid work with three Quinn-controlled Russian companies, she said she had no record of her employment contract or any other documents relating to her involvement in the Quinns' property interests.

"This is not unusual or sinister," she said, adding that she never had employment contracts during her time with Quinn Insurance, nor from her time working as a nurse.

She was the second of five of Sean Quinn's children and three of their spouses to be cross-examined by lawyers for the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC).

The former Anglo Irish Bank wants to know whether they fully disclosed information on assets and accounts in their names after freezing orders were imposed by the court last July.


Shane Murphy, for IBRC, said it was "highly implausible" that Ms Quinn had no documentation about her employment, involvement in the Quinn Group or major cash transactions.

Her sister, Brenda, gave evidence for 30 minutes, confirming she had more than €30,000 in a joint account with one of her nieces or nephews. She said this was from her wages at Quinn Insurance.

Another sibling, Collette, said she had the equivalent of €12,500 left in her Ocean Bank account, but had no bank statements, only text message updates on her balance.

The case continues.

Irish Independent

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