Cab to fight any Kennedy move to get Jackson Way €12.86m
Businessman will be forced to take legal action if he wants compensation
Businessman Jim Kennedy will have to take legal action to collect a €12.86 million land compensation payment, sources have indicated
Businessman Jim Kennedy will have to take legal action to collect a €12.86 million land compensation payment after the planning tribunal found he was involved in corruption with Frank Dunlop, sources have indicated.
Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council has been holding the money, awarded by an arbitrator to Jackson Way Properties Ltd when 20 acres were acquired to build the M50, for almost a decade.
Both the council and the Criminal Assets Bureau are expected to fight any attempt by Mr Kennedy to collect the award. The bureau obtained a High Court order in 2006 freezing all assets of Jackson Way, of which Mr Kennedy is a director, on the basis the company had made financial gains from corruption. It is understood no payment is likely in the near future in relation to the €12.8 million sum, plus legal fees and interest. The council has declined to comment.
Meanwhile, some of the councillors named as having received corrupt payments in the tribunal’s report on the land at Carrickmines published yesterday are expected to take court challenges.
Mr Kennedy and four politicians – Don Lydon, Colm McGrath, Liam Cosgrave and Tony Fox – walked free from Dublin Circuit Criminal Court last week after their trial collapsed due to Mr Dunlop’s medical condition. All four denied the charges.
However, the tribunal report yesterday found the former lobbyist made corrupt payments totalling £25,000 to the four councillors and other politicians to secure the rezoning of land at Carrickmines. This was done on behalf of Mr Kennedy, one of the owners of the land, it was alleged. The payment of the money to three former councillors, one sitting councillor and two deceased councillors constituted corrupt activity on the part of Mr Dunlop and Mr Kennedy, it found.
The Carrickmines chapter was omitted when the tribunal published its final report in March 2012 because criminal proceedings in relation to the land were pending. The collapse of the case cleared the way for its publication.
According to the report, Mr Lydon, a former Fianna Fáil senator, received a £3,000 corrupt payment from Mr Dunlop in 1992. Mr Lydon yesterday categorically denied the findings and said he was “most aggrieved” the tribunal was giving credence to Mr Dunlop’s allegations. He claimed that in the recent corruption trial Mr Dunlop was again shown to have lied while giving evidence.
Other corrupt payments identified were £2,000 to former Fianna Fáil councillor Colm McGrath, two payments totalling £9,000 to former Fine Gael senator Liam Cosgrave and £7,000 in two payments to then Fianna Fáil councillor Tony Fox.
Payments to two deceased councillors – Tom Hand of Fine Gael and Seán Gilbride of Fianna Fáil – were found to be corrupt. Payments to former Independent councillor John O’Halloran and Fianna Fáil’s Betty Coffey were described as improper but Mr Dunlop’s evidence on deceased councillors Cyril Gallagher and Jack Larkin was rejected.
The late Fianna Fáil TD Liam Lawlor had a “wide-ranging corrupt relationship” with Mr Dunlop, the report found.