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New complaints against Katona's ex-accountant

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Case: Pop star Kerry Katona’s former accountant has come under investigation. Photo: PA

Case: Pop star Kerry Katona’s former accountant has come under investigation. Photo: PA

Case: Pop star Kerry Katona’s former accountant has come under investigation. Photo: PA

Detectives are investigating up to 15 separate new criminal complaints from people who alleged that they have been swindled by the former accountant of pop star Kerry Katona.

The new allegations against David McHugh (62) have emerged after officers from the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau (GNECB) carried out a planned search at a premises in north Kildare in relation to his alleged fraudulent activities earlier this month.

"A number of people have come forward saying that they have been ripped off by this individual - this has mostly involved immigration cases," a senior source said last night.

"The allegation is that people have given over money from €1,000 to €200 in individual cases, and these cases are being investigated by the fraud squad - the average seems to be around €400.

"This is going to be a painstaking investigation - these are additional complaints on top of the allegations that led to previous searches.

"Multiple documents and devices have been seized in this investigation and it could be next year before everything is fully analysed."

GNECB officers have also been investigating whether convicted criminal Mr McHugh has set up a new "fake" law firm.

The Law Society of Ireland branded the so-called solicitors firm linked to the convicted fraudster as a "fake law firm". The society posted a notice on its website about the firm as an investigation continues into the activities of Mr McHugh, from Tallaght, west Dublin.

The Law Society warned two named legal practitioners are not on the "roll of solicitors".

Irish Independent