Sean Quinn jnr purges contempt with €210,000 payment

Judge directs that costs should be paid by ultimate loser of action brought by IBRC against Quinns

A file image of Sean Quinn Jnr arriving at the High Court.Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

A file image of Sean Quinn Jnr arriving at the High Court.Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Wed, Dec 4, 2013, 13:31

A €210,000 payment by Sean Quinn jnr which was raised by himself and his wife via a charge on their Dublin home has finally purged his contempt of court orders, a High Court judge ruled today.

Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne said she was “grateful” the contempt matter, ongoing since June 2012 when she made a finding of contempt against Mr Quinn, was at an end.

She made the remarks after accepting an undertaking by Larry Brennan, solicitor for Mr Quinn, to pay the sum of €210,000 to solicitors for Quinn Properties Sweden, a company now controlled by receivers appointed by Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, to finally purge his client’s contempt.

The €210,000 had been lodged by Mr Quinn jnr in his solicitor’s client account, the court heard.

The judge said she was satisfied that the undertaking by Mr Brennan to pay out the monies to Dillon Eustace, solicitors for Quinn Properties Sweden, “resolves every aspect of the matter” as far as Mr Quinn jnr was concerned.

The judge also directed that the substantial costs of multiple applications concerning the purging of Mr Quinn jnr’s contempt should be paid by the ultimate loser of the action brought by IBRC against Mr Quinn jnr and other members of his family, plus a number of companies.

In that action, IBRC alleges a conspiracy to put assets in the Quinns’ international property group beyond the bank’s reach.

The full hearing of the action has been parked pending the outcome of criminal proceedings against former executives of Anglo Irish Bank, IBRC’s predecessor in title.

Pending that full hearing, IBRC secured injunctions in June and July 2011 restraining the Quinns and others putting IPG assets beyond its reach.

It later brought contempt proceedings against Sean Quinn snr, his son Sean jnr and his nephew Peter Darragh Quinn alleging they had acted in contempt of those injunctions.

After hearing evidence on behalf of the bank and the three men, Ms Justice Dunne in June 2012 found contempt against all three.

She imposed a three month jail term on Mr Quinn jnr and on Peter Darragh Quinn but only Mr Quinn jnr served that term as his cousin failed to attend court for the judgment and a warrant for his arrest remains unexecuted while he remains at his home in Northern Ireland.

Mr Quinn snr also served a term of imprisonment over Christmas 2012.

The contempt finding against Mr Quinn jnr arose from the judge’s finding he was involved in the making of a $500,000 payment to the former general director of Quinn Properties Ukraine, Larissa Puga, around the time of that company’s takeover by IBRC. He had denied involvement.

In court today, Martin Hayden SC, for Mr Quinn, said his side believed the €210,000 should be paid to QPU, not Quinn Properties Sweden, but Shane Murphy SC, for IBRC, opposed that.

The judge said she also had reservations in that regard as she was unsure as to what entity controlled QPU and was anxious that “nothing gets lost”.

After Mr Murphy said the monies would be held by solicitors for Quinn Properties Sweden AB, which has an interest in QPU, Mr Hayden said he was happy with that.

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