Clayton's costly home help: Hawkins looked after mansion and stole €2.8 million

Sat, Jul 7, 2012, 01:00

U2 BASS player Adam Clayton must rue the day he encountered Carol Hawkins and her now ex-husband John Hawkins on a Caribbean island during Christmas 1992. U2 had just completed the third leg of their Zoo TV tour, which ended the previous month in Mexico.

The couple owned a hotel and 12 chalets. The name of the hotel or the island on which it was located were not disclosed in court, and Clayton couldn’t remember when asked about it afterwards, but he remembered the impression the couple made on him. Carol Hawkins, born Carol Rowsall in London in 1962, had two small children, Joseph and Eleanor, at the time. The couple expressed an interest in bringing up their children in Europe.

Clayton needed somebody organised and diligent to look after his chaotic affairs. He described coming back from tour to find the electricity cut off because he had not paid a bill. Hawkins and her husband moved, rent-free, into Mr Clayton’s 20-bedroom Rathfarnham mansion, Danesmote. She looked after the house and was, according to her defence counsel Ken Fogarty, a “general dogsbody”. Her husband drove Clayton.

The couple were clearly trusted by Clayton, who lent John Hawkins £20,000 in 1996 to pursue his interests in horseracing. In 2000 Carol Hawkins was taught simple bookkeeping and was given the power to sign Clayton’s cheques.

Twenty-two racehorses, an apartment in New York, €20,000 on flights to Miami, a new VW Golf for her son, €23,706 on jewellery and perfume and €225,000 on restaurants and hotels were just some of the purchases in a four-year spending spree.