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ONE final pint BEFORE NINE WEEKS BEHIND BARS

SIPPING one last pint in a pub close to Dublin's High Court, Sean Quinn Snr realised D-Day had finally arrived.

After enjoying his last meal as a free man with son Sean Jnr, the 66-year-old walked the short distance into court room number six where he was told he will spend the next 63 nights behind bars.

For the past 18 months, the iconic businessman attempted to persuade even his greatest critics that he was not the bad guy.

Although most believe that the Fermanagh man was deceitful to an extraordinary degree, he has succeeded in winning some people over with his notable charm.

But in the end none of that mattered as Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne and she said she could not ignore the extent and degree of contempt of court by Quinn.

His behaviour, the judge said, in sanctioning an asset-stripping scheme fell into the category of serious misconduct, which mandated a term of imprisonment be imposed on the party guilty of contempt.



Humiliating

So for the next nine weeks he will spend his time in the same prison as rapists, murderers and drug dealers.

He has been sentenced to a similar fate as his son Sean Jnr in the summer -- a stint behind bars in Dublin's Mountjoy jail.

The former businessman will be known by prison officers as prisoner 82809 -- a humiliating indictment of an individual once hailed as Ireland's greatest employer and richest man.

As he spends the next nine weeks in the jail's Training Unit, Mr Quinn will be well aware that his family is slowly but surely losing the battle against their nemesis, the former Anglo Irish Bank.

The father-of-five will however enjoy the relatively comfortable lifestyle experienced by his son when he too was sentenced in July for contempt of court.

The compound is a far cry, however, from the palatial mansion in Ballyconnell that Mr Quinn calls 'home'. The luxurious property is complete with an indoor golf simulator, a putting green, 15 metre swimming pool, a hot tub and , a cinema and snooker room.

But Quinn Snr will be given the option of socialising with other inmates in the games room in order to pass the time. An avid fan of poker, Mr Quinn may decide to deal a few hands as his son was pictured doing a couple of months ago.

After Ms Justice Dunne brought court proceedings to a close, Mr Quinn stood at the back of court and digested what had just occurred.

"They took all my money, all my companies, they took my reputation and they put me in jail -- yet they've proved nothing," he said during an impromptu media session.

And speaking on the steps of the the four courts, Sean Quinn Jnr again denied that his father was in breach of court orders.

"I just would like to say it's a very sad day to see Dad jailed on the behest of Anglo Irish Bank -- the very bank who ruined this country. He is a father, grandfather and husband and he will be missed dearly during this time."

Just a short time ago Sean Quinn Snr was one of the most revered business figures on the planet. But now he is a broken man and has health problems which are sure to make his time in prison even more difficult.


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