Quinn family gambling again, this time with their liberty
The nature and size of his bet meant he was left recklessly exposed when the share price fell, as it did so dramatically in 2008. In fact, Quinn’s own gambling in the stock had in itself a destabilising effect on the bank.
Quinn said last year his mistake was to rely on Ireland’s banks and predictions for their continued growth by financial experts. Yet anyone who could be described as an expert in financial matters would point to the craziness of taking such a large position on one company in a highly leveraged bet.
The fact that CFDs allow investors to build stakes anonymously meant Quinn did this in secret until he showed his hand in September 2007. By then it was too late – the stake was too high and Quinn too exposed at a time when the deck was stacked against Ireland.
All the noise from the Quinn camp that his wife and children are not liable for what they claim are illegal loans drowns out the fact that Quinn has been ordered by a court to repay €2.2 billion in loans to the bank and that this debt ultimately tipped him into bankruptcy.
Quinn revealed a little about the psychology of his gambling in a recent interview with the Financial Times. “It was never our intention to own 25 per cent of the bank but, as it got cheaper, we just seemed to buy more and we got sucked in,” he said.
Now it has been shown in evidence before the court that he and other members of his family have been gambling with their liberty.
The extraordinary evidence produced by the bank in the contempt case shows that family members were directing affairs in their international property group at a time when court orders prohibited them from doing so.
The Supreme Court will reveal today why it rejected Seán Quinn jnr’s appeal against his contempt and three-month sentence, and next week the family will respond to the latest litany of allegations from the bank showing what the evidence suggests is a far deeper conspiracy to shift assets away from the bank.
The Quinn house of cards seems to becoming more unstable with each court date.