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'Liar' Gilligan loses battle for family homes

CRIME boss John Gilligan lost his High Court battle to regain control of his properties after the judge ruled his evidence was littered with lies.

In a lengthy judgment by Mr Justice Kevin Feeney, he said evidence given by the jailed drug dealer about his gambling earnings was "implausible".

He ruled that just €19,050 (£15,000IRL) of the money invested in four properties in the 1980s and 1990s was earned legitimately. The rest of the money, he ruled, was the proceeds of crime.

The action was taken by Gilligan, his wife Tracey, and children Darren and Tracey to regain seized properties by the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB).

The family had argued the properties were bought with legitimate earnings. However, the judgment said:

  • Evidence given by Gilligan was "incredible".

  • Gilligan chose to ignore his involvement in illegal drugs and resulting profits which was "indicative of his willingness to swear falsehoods".

  • Gilligan's own evidence showed he didn't generate enough money from gambling to buy all the properties.

Mr Justice Feeney said Gilligan -- who received 16 criminal convictions between 1967 and 1993 -- made "substantial losses" at the bookies.

Stewart Kenny of Paddy Power had told the court they were monitoring Gilligan. He was allowed to continue betting because he was a loser.

Mr Gilligan -- who is serving a 20-year jail term for drugs offences -- had also claimed that he had received a £4mSTG loan from a Joseph Saouma, which was used to renovate his properties. However Mr Saouma did not appear in court and there was no documentary evidence of this loan.

Mr Justice Feeney said he will accept submissions from the parties before hearing an application from CAB for a disposal order.