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Saturday 17 February 2018

Lowry urged to give more details on £250,000 land-agent payment

Michael Lowry’s phone conversation with Kevin Phelan was taped
Michael Lowry’s phone conversation with Kevin Phelan was taped

Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor

INDEPENDENT TD Michael Lowry is under pressure to provide further details about a payment he made to a land agent.

Mr Lowry has maintained that he fully declared the payment of either stg£200,00 or stg£250,000 to Northern Ireland-based land agent Kevin Phelan in his company's annual accounts.

But there are no specific details in the annual accounts filed by Mr Lowry's refrigeration company Garuda of the payment.

A business source said this was not unexpected because company accounts just provided an overall picture of a company's finance – and generally not individual transactions.

But there are questions over whether there is a "contradiction" with evidence Mr Lowry gave to the Moriarty Tribunal.

Mr Lowry said he paid Mr Phelan more than stg£60,000 to ensure he had no future claim to a land project in Wigan he was involved in, according to the tribunal report.

But in the taped conversation with Mr Phelan in 2004, Mr Lowry constantly referred to a sum of either stg£200,00 or stg£250,000, which he said he paid to Mr Phelan.

SF TD Padraig MacLochlainn has called on him to make a "clarifying statement". A spokeswoman for Mr Lowry said he was not available for comment.

Irish Independent

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