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IBRC puts audit firm in the dock

THE former Anglo Irish Bank has initiated legal action against Ernst & Young, its auditors before the financial collapse.

IBRC, the current incarnation of Anglo since it was taken into State-ownership in 2009, said that the case relates to the firm's role as auditors before the bank's nationalisation.

The accountancy firm was paid millions to carry out audits of the bank's financial health during this period.

The bank issued the legal proceedings on Tuesday, according to High Court records and it is the first time an Irish bank has taken legal action against its former auditors over their conduct in the run-up and during the financial crisis.

A spokesman for IBRC said the case relates to Ernst & Young's role as auditors in the period running up to the nationalisation but said that as it was now a matter subject to litigation, it would be inappropriate to comment further. Ernst & Young confirmed it was aware of the legal proceedings but said it could not comment as it had not received the details of IBRC's proceedings.