Sunday 21 January 2018

Gayle Killilea in fresh move to open Nama files

Glamorous developer seeks confidential records

Gayle Killilea
Gayle Killilea

RONALD QUINLAN Special Correspondent

EFFORTS by Nama to keep its dealings with developers a closely guarded secret could be dealt a major blow in the coming weeks as a result of its aggressive pursuit of former 'Baron of Ballsbridge' Sean Dunne and his wife, Gayle Killilea-Dunne, through the US courts.

While the agency secured a victory last week in obtaining a discovery order, compelling Ms Killilea-Dunne to produce details of all property and money transferred to her by her husband since 2008, the Sunday Independent understands that the former journalist turned property developer had already fired off a legal salvo of her own. If successful, it could set a precedent for other embattled developers to follow.

Sources close to the matter have revealed that Ms Killilea-Dunne's lawyers wrote to Nama's US attorneys on February 20, seeking confidential documents relating to the agency's handling of Sean Dunne's business plans.

Chief among the items sought by the lawyers are copies of the minutes from the meetings of Nama's credit committee, which ultimately decided to reject Mr Dunne's proposals.

Should those records be forthcoming, the views of individual members of Nama's credit committee (which includes its CEO Brendan McDonagh) in relation to Mr Dunne's business could end up being aired in court.

The implications of that may be of relevance for Mr McDonagh, given his insistence that he has no personal knowledge of Mr Dunne's affairs and so should not be required to make himself available for questioning in relation to it.

While Judge Barbara Brazzel-Massaro has so far kept a protective order in place, preventing Ms Killilea-Dunne's lawyers from deposing the Nama CEO, she has not ruled out lifting the order.

Commenting in her court two weeks ago on a newspaper interview Mr McDonagh had given in relation to Nama, the judge told the agency's US attorneys: "I read the article. And I think that there is a basis for him (Mr McDonagh) to be deposed. The question is when he is going to be deposed. You tell me."

Among the other documents now being sought by Ms Killilea-Dunne's lawyers are all records that Nama holds in relation to its use of international forensic accountants, Kroll, to investigate Mr Dunne's business affairs.

Last week, Nama was granted discovery of documents dating back to 2008 pertaining to Gayle Killilea-Dunne's sources of income; details concerning assets and loans; and information relating to her role in a number of companies and documentation relating to her US immigration status. The judge disallowed Nama's request that Ms Killilea-Dunne produce any documentation relating to her husband.

The Sunday Independent understands that Mr Dunne engaged in detailed correspondence with Nama in 2011 relating to a range of transfers he had engaged in three years previously.

Asked by Nama to outline the precise nature of those transactions, Mr Dunne told the agency how he had disposed of lands at the former Irish Glass Bottle (IGB) site in Clonskeagh, Dublin to Ms Killilea-Dunne on December 15, 2008, in part-settlement of a debt owing to her as a result of the remortgaging of their family home on Shrewsbury Road.

Mr Dunne explained how the remortgaging of 'Ouragh' had been necessary for the purposes of providing capital to his group's parent company, DCD Builders Limited.

The second transaction saw Mr Dunne sell residential sites in Celbridge, Co Kildare, to his son Steven for "cash equating to the market value". In both cases, it is understood that Mr Dunne provided Nama with copies of the official deeds of transfer in 2011.

Apart from those two land transfers, Mr Dunne informed the agency of his disposal of shares in Mountbrook Homes in October 2008 for "full cash consideration".

He also provided Nama with details of his transfer in 2008 of a director's loan in the company to Ms Killilea-Dunne in part settlement of an agreement the couple had drawn up in 2005 upon the birth of their first child.

And Mr Dunne informed Nama that he was legally precluded from providing them with details of matters relating to family-law proceedings.

Irish Independent

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