Anglo directors flew to Nice to meet ‘Maple 10’ developer, trial told

Businessman Gerard Maguire on holiday in south of France when bank executives contacted him

 Gerard Maguire at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court yesterday. Photograph: Collins Courts.

Gerard Maguire at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court yesterday. Photograph: Collins Courts.

Fri, Feb 14, 2014, 09:10

Former Anglo Irish Bank directors David Drumm and Pat Whelan flew to the south of France in July 2008 to approach a property developer about investing in the so-called Maple 10 deal, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court has been told.

Businessman Gerard Maguire said he was on holiday in Nice when he received a call from Mr Whelan, who told him the bank needed his assistance as its shares were under attack from hedge funds and this was impacting on Irish banks. Two days later Mr Whelan and Mr Drumm flew to Nice and the three men met for around two hours.

Mr Drumm said the bank would provide a loan facility of up to €60 million to Mr Maguire so he could invest in the bank’s shares. The developer agreed, he said, believing the share purchases would help “put a stop of this run on bank shares” and bring “stability and confidence.”

He said he was told the Financial Regulator approved the deal and that positive legal advice had been received.

Mr Maguire was giving evidence on day seven of the trial of Seán FitzPatrick (65), William McAteer (63) and Pat Whelan (51), who have been charged with 16 counts of providing unlawful financial assistance to 16 individuals in July 2008 to buy shares in the bank.

Mr Whelan has also been charged with being privy to the fraudulent alteration of loan facility letters to seven individuals in October 2008. The three men have pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The trial previously heard that Mr Drumm and Mr Whelan flew to Faro in Portugal to meet another property developer about the Maple 10 deal.