More cash found by Cab at former home of Priory Hall developer Tom McFeely
Finds at Ailesbury Road property total €200,000
Gardaí and officers from the Criminal Assests Bureau at the former home of developer Tom McFeely yesterday. Photograph: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland
A search by the Criminal Assets Bureau of the former home of controversial Priory Hall developer Thomas McFeely continued yesterday.
A total sum of €200,000 in cash has been found at the substantial property at Ailesbury Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin, but it is understood no one has come forward to claim the money.
Cab officers found €60,000 on Wednesday. Their search was initiated after a plumber engaged in renovation works for the new owners alerted his employer after he found €140,000 in €50 notes hidden in cash in the bathroom last Friday.
It is understood the additional €60,000 was also found in the bathroom, also made up of €50 notes wrapped in rubber bands and packed into plastic bags.
The gardens and drains of the extensive redbrick property, once valued at €15 million but sold earlier this year for €2.5 million, were searched throughout yesterday with teams of gardaí seen removing bags from inside the home and using heavy tools including long-handled shovels, axes and ladders.
Mr McFeely, said to have debts of some €200 million, was adjudicated bankrupt at the High Court in August 2012.
After a legal battle, his home was then repossessed by the National Assets Management Agency as part of its efforts to enforce a €9.5 million judgment obtained against him over unpaid loans.
Mr McFeely told a High Court hearing last year he had about €1,600 in the bank. The €200,000 sum will be retained in a bank account under the control of the official assignee in bankruptcy pending a decision on what should happen to it.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny said yesterday that Nama – after taking control of Mr McFeely’s loans – would be interested in the cash discoveries. “I understand that an inch-by-inch survey or investigation is being carried out both in this residence and on the grounds of the premises,” he said.
“I think all of that smacks of what happened during the so-called tiger years when you had prolificacy and greed and money sloshing around in so many places.”
Mr Kenny added: “Nama have obviously a clear interest in this. We’ll see what transpires from the investigation.”
A former IRA hunger-striker, Mr McFeely was involved in the development of Priory Hall in Donaghmede which was evacuated almost two years ago after Dublin City Council raised concerns about fire safety and other matters.
About 180 families had to leave their homes.