Monday 20 November 2017

Mick Wallace: TD admits he can’t afford to repay over €19m in loans to ACC Bank reporters

WEXFORD TD Mick Wallace has admitted he can’t afford to repay €19m in loans to ACC Bank after being ordered to do so by the courts today.

The former builder-turned Independent TD gave personal guarantees on a number of loans issued to his company M & J Wallace between 2004 and 2008 – it is now in receivership.

He has been ordered in the Commercial Court to pay the money back and while he acknowledged it is his responsibility to uphold the law, when asked if he had the money to repay the debt he said: "No, I am not in a very good position, but I accept the judgement of the court,” he said.

“I borrowed the money, I can't pay it back, so it's my problem."

Lawyers for ACC Bank told the court that until late 2010 there had been a good, constructive relationship between the Wexford TD and the institution.

A review of the company’s finances then showed significant revenue and debt trades.

Lawyers for Mr Wallace said they were not objecting to the matter being entered into the commercial division of the high court.

Senior Counsel, James Dwyer said Mr Wallace had no defence to the demand for summary judgment.

The move against Mr Wallace could have far-reaching ramifications for the property developer who admitted in the past that he gave personal guarantees on "just about everything".

If ACC is successful in its action, Mr Wallace's family home and other family properties could be under threat.

If bankruptcy proceedings are brought against Mr Wallace, he could be forced out of the Dail as the 1992 Electoral Act bars bankrupts from holding office.

However, Mr Wallace said last June that he didn't expect to be made bankrupt because there would be "no merit" in any of the banks doing so.

"It would cost them money to do so," he said.

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