O’Flynn brothers suing Nama over information leak

Developers in action to discover what O’Flynn Construction details were leaked by Farrell

Developers Michael and John O'Flynn are suing the National Asset Management Agency (Nama) and a former official over the leaking of information on their business to third parties.

The brothers and their company, O'Flynn Construction, are understood to have been among a number of high-profile Nama debtors about whose properties former agency official Enda Farrell leaked information to investment companies.

Circuit Court Judge Karen O'Connor recently gave Farrell, of La Reine, Avenue Louise, Brussels, Belgium, a two-year suspended sentence after he pleaded guilty to leaking the information, which is a criminal offence under the 2009 Nama Act.

O'Flynn Construction and its directors Michael and John O'Flynn recently launched proceedings to get the High Court to order Nama subsidiary, National Asset Loan Management, and Farrell to tell them what information was leaked in relation to the business and to whom.


The court is due to hear initial arguments relating to the case early next week. It is understood that, depending on the outcome, the company could have the option of seeking damages against Nama and other parties.

This is the second legal action the agency faces as a result of the Farrell prosecution. It emerged recently that another well-known developer, Paddy McKillen, was taking a case against Nama arising out of the same case.

Mr McKillen began proceedings for "misfeasance in public office" against the Minister for Finance, former Department of Finance secretary general John Moran, Nama and its officials, Paul Hennigan and Farrell.

The developers are trying to establish what information was passed on, who received it and what implications it may have for their businesses. It is understood that they had always believed that Nama would be obliged tell them these details after the investigation and prosecution of Farrell were complete.

Farrell pleaded guilty to unlawfully disclosing the information between May and July 2012. Dublin Circuit Court heard that Farrell sent confidential material about the Nama valuation of hundreds of assets to individuals in property company QED Equity and multinational investment bank Canaccord Genuity, which has an Irish office.

The records covered major developers’ properties, Nama’s hotels and its German assets. Farrell told investigators that he thought he was advancing the agency’s interests.

Prosecutors said it was not part of their case that Farrell had materially benefited from his actions or that Nama’s ability to do its business had been compromised.

Michael O’Flynn was one of the top 10 developers whose debts Nama bought from the banks in 2010. In 2014, US fund Blackstone bought his companies’ €1.8 billion liability for about €1.1 billion. The buyer then attempted to take control of the group and remove Mr O’Flynn, who stopped this in court. The pair subsequently agreed a settlement.

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O’Halloran covers energy, construction, insolvency, and gaming and betting, among other areas