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Fraud squad makes second Anglo arrest

GARDAI today arrested another former top executive of Anglo Irish Bank following the detention of Sean FitzPatrick last week.

William McAteer, in his late 50s, who was the bank's finance director and chief risk officer, was arrested this morning by Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation detectives.

He was being detained under the provisions of Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984 at Irishtown Garda Station.

Mr McAteer quit Anglo in January last year in the wake of Mr FitzPatrick's resignation over secret loans to directors.

A Garda spokesman confirmed this morning: "As part of the ongoing investigation by gardai from the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation into alleged financial irregularities at a financial institution, a search was carried out this morning and a male in his late 50s has been arrested."

Mr McAteer was arrested at 6.30am.

He was being held under the same detention legislation under which Mr FitzPatrick was arrested.

He can be questioned for up to 24 hours.

Mr McAteer was being held on suspicion of offences committed under section 10 of the Theft and Fraud Offences Act.


It is understood he is being questioned in connection with alleged false accounting at the bank.

Following Mr McAteer's arrest, Finance Minster Brian Lenihan reiterated comments he made after the arrest of Mr FitzPatrick.

"I have always stated that there is an extensive Garda investigation under way. I have been cautious not to prejudice that investigation and am eager to see justice take its course," Mr Lenihan said.

Alan Dukes, chairman designate of Anglo, said there are "a series of ongoing investigations into how things went wrong in the bank".

"As far as we're concerned at the bank, the sooner these investigations are concluded the better," he added.

Mr FitzPatrick was released from Bray Garda Station on Friday afternoon without charges being brought.

Gardai are preparing a file for the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Mr FitzPatrick had resigned as chairman of the bank in December 2008 after it emerged he concealed details of an €87m loan he took from the bank from shareholders.

Anglo built its business and reputation by lending to Ireland's high-profile property and construction players.

As the housing bubble burst, investors walked away, wiping out Anglo's share price.