Quinn 'has no clue' where rents are
The son of bankrupt businessman Sean Quinn 'does not have a clue' where rents from the family's global property empire have gone, he has told a court.
The son of bankrupt businessman Seán Quinn has said he does not believe he is obliged to say what he has done with almost €400,000 paid to him over a year by companies in his family's international property group (IPG).
His wife was advised by lawyers she was not required to say how she spent €320,297 paid to her, Seán Quinn Jnr also told the Commercial Court.
Mr Quinn agreed he was general director finance of a Russian company, Logistika, and had sought and received details of multi-million cash balances of several IPG Russian companies in March 2012. He had no clue about the whereabouts of rents or other monies paid to those as he dealt with tenant issues and other matters like snow removal, not accounts, he said.
"I do not have a clue where the money has gone and let me be struck dead as I leave this court if that's wrong," he said. Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, formerly Anglo Irish Bank, had previously alleged the rent monies went off-shore and more recently claimed they went to "grey companies", he said.
The fact some of his requests for payment by Russian companies of salaries, bonuses and flights for his family were declined showed he was not in control of the companies' finances and payments, he said.
Mr Quinn was the last of seven Quinn family members to be cross-examined by lawyers for IBRC about whether they have fully disclosed all information related to their assets and involvement in IPG companies. They insist they have while the bank claims they have not.
The cross-examination began two weeks ago and concluded today after five days. The matter has been adjourned by Mr Justice Peter Kelly to allow the sides prepare legal submissions as to whether the bank is entitled to orders compelling more disclosure. The judge said the bank should be "more specific" about its claims of non-disclosure.
Today, Mr Quinn Jnr said the IPG companies were managed by Quinn International Property Management before IBRC appointed receivers to Quinn companies in April 2011.
After that, he and other family members decided to manage some companies. "We did not know exactly what we were getting into."
They entered employment contracts with Russian companies in May and June 2011 after which the bank secured orders restraining stripping of assets.
He denied it was "wholly implausible" for him to say he has no more documents related to IPG companies, such as the employment contracts, and said he had disclosed all the documents he can.
The contracts were in Russian and remained with the companies, he said. The Quinns could not get them due to legal proceedings in several countries and there was "zero chance" of getting documents from the Ukraine.
He had been found in contempt of court, served three months in jail for that, he and his wife had agree to sell their home to purge his contempt and he faced further court appearances in that regard. He was "in a very precarious position" and it was "just wrong" to suggest he was hiding any documents.
He worked long hours in Russia for IPG companies and did not regard the payment to him of a €399,308 salary over a year between 2011 and 2012 as stripping of assets. The salary was paid into his Ocean Bank account in Moscow and he received text messages when monies were paid in, he said.
He still had some of the salary as well as documents concerning payments out but did not believe he was required to disclose those.
His wife Karen Woods received a salary of €320,297 from IPG companies over a year from July 2011, he agreed. Although she brought documents to the family's previous lawyers, Eversheds, relating to how some of that sum was spent, she was advised she was not required to disclose those, he said. He believed he and his wife were PAYE workers and were taxed at source on those salaries.
Mr Justice Kelly remarked the salaries received by the Quinns were greater "by a country mile" than those paid to senior management of the companies.
Also yesterday, Mr Quinn referred to a "pot" of money from which funds were paid by Senat Legal, a firm based in Dubai, to lawyers who acted for the Quinns in various jurisdictions but said he believed the source of the pot was not a matter he was required to answer at this stage.
The bank was asking him about documents said to have been retrieved from the damaged server of a Russian company but he was recently told there was no such server, he added.