Seán Quinn will end up in jail, says daughter
AOIFE QUINN, the daughter of bankrupt businessman Seán Quinn, said her father will join her brother in jail because they cannot purge contempt of court orders.
She said they didn’t have “a pot of gold” or control over assets that they had moved beyond the reach of the former Anglo Irish Bank.
In her first television interview, Ms Quinn said the family were unable to purge contempt of court orders to reverse the transfer of assets in the family’s international property group beyond the bank’s reach without its co-operation.
“People think that we have a pot of gold sitting under our beds at home. We do not have a pot of gold,” she said on the Tonight with Sam Smyth programme, which was broadcast on TV3 last night.
“There is a receiver appointed over each and every one of our assets. Where is this pot of gold that people think that we have? It doesn’t exist. If Daddy’s bankruptcy manager were able to find it, or if it existed, he would have found it. It is not there. You cannot give what you do not have. We do not have these assets so we can’t give them back.”
Ms Quinn said the family could help the bank, now called Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, to try and recover the assets and “litigate our way out of this”.
“But unless Anglo accepts our proposal to do that, unfortunately Seán [jnr] is going to sit in jail and unfortunately it appears our father is going to join him there and they are going to stay there until Anglo decide to co-operate, be that months or years, but unfortunately the decision is completely out of our hands,” Ms Quinn said.
IBRC declined to respond to her comments on the programme.
She confirmed she had visited her brother, Seán jnr, in Mountjoy Prison where he is serving a three-month sentence for contempt of court orders barring assetstripping in the Quinn property business.
He was “coping under the circumstances”, she said, and it was “an exceptionally difficult situation”.
Her father, brother and cousin Peter Darragh Quinn would have purged their contempt by now if they had the ability to do so, she said. “There is no way I would leave, that any member of our family would leave, our brother sitting in Mountjoy Prison for the sake of not purging contempt, for the sake of sitting on your hands,” said Ms Quinn, who is Mr Quinn’s second-youngest daughter.
Stephen Kelly, Ms Quinn’s husband, who also appeared on the programme, confirmed the family transferred a Russian property company worth $13 million (€10.6 million) to him in return for a laptop computer. “I never denied I done that transaction,” he said, adding the company had debts of $15 million and was in negative equity. “If Anglo had proper security, like they are alleging, do you think that would be possible? Could I take your house off you, if you had a mortgage with a bank, for a laptop?” said Mr Kelly.
Asked whether the family business, Quinn Group, paid for the cost of their wedding in 2010, Ms Quinn said she didn’t know.
“All of our personal and company dealings were dealt with from Derrylin, from [the Quinn Group] head office in Derrylin. That went for everything – from wills advice, from tax advice, from personal expenses,” she said.
“We owned the companies. The companies looked after all our tax affairs. Everything was dealt with appropriately down in Derrylin.”
Ms Quinn said on the programme that Peter Darragh Quinn, who was sentenced to three months in prison but who failed to appear in court last month, was “living his life in his home . . . in Fermanagh”.
She said that to say he was “wanted” by the courts was a “very dramatic way of putting it”.
A court warrant for his arrest is outstanding since last month. Ms Quinn repeated her claim that Anglo acted with complete disregard for the validity of the security supporting loans of €2.34 billion when it moved to take control of the Quinn Group which she owned with her brother and three sisters.
The Quinn children and their mother have taken a legal action against the bank claiming that the €2.34 billion in loans cannot be called in because they are “tainted with illegality” as they were provided to prop up the bank’s share price during the summer of 2008.
Prior to the programme’s broadcast, TV3 issued a statement saying that Ms Quinn had asked the station to clarify a comment she had made during the programme, in which she said that Peter Darragh Quinn owned a tower block in Kiev. She asked to clarify that Mr Quinn owned the Kutuzoff Tower in Moscow, not a property in Kiev.