Meath builders pay Revenue €2.2m in tax settlement

Some €22.6m in unpaid taxes and penalties paid, tax defaulter’s list shows

The Revenue Commissioners has published a list of 136 tax defaulters for the three months from April to June.

The Revenue Commissioners has published a list of 136 tax defaulters for the three months from April to June.


Business Affairs Correspondent

The Revenue Commissioners yesterday published a list of 136 tax defaulters who collectively owe it more than €22.6 million in unpaid taxes and penalties.

The biggest settlement was with a Meath firm of builders-turned-property developers, Midland Contractors, which owes almost €2.2 million including more than €1 million in interest and charges.

Midland, whose directors include Patrick Kerrigan, was also named on a defaulters list six years ago, when it received a bill for €2.3 million.

Another company linked to Mr Kerrigan, the Old Darnley Lodge in Athboy which had ceased trading before being taken over by new owners this summer, also made a €1.5 million settlement on the same list of 2007 defaulters.

Some of Midland’s debts are in Nama, according to company documents, and it went into liquidation in May shortly after it had a court judgment registered against it by a subsidiary of the Quinn Group once controlled by Seán Quinn.

Mr Kerrigan was also sued last year for more than €22 million by KBC bank after he guaranteed the debts of a development company, but that case was settled before it reached a hearing.

The tax defaulters’ list , for the three months from April to June, included four defaulters who each owe more than €1 million, including Midland. It also included a further three who each owe more than €500,000 and another 52 who owe more than €100,000.

The next highest bill after Midland was for a Leitrim firm of bed suppliers, the Orthopaedic Bed Company, which paid €1.23 million. It is also in liquidation, on foot of a court order from 10 years ago. Brendan O’Connor, a company director from Wexford, also received a bill for €1.2 million, the third highest settlement.

Barry & Sons (Navan) received a bill for just over €1 million. The company is run by the Dublin-based Bari family, and its three directors are Ashar, Athar and Moshan Bari.

The family previously ran a number of Haagen Dazs cafes in Dublin, as well as the Japan and Angel ladies fashion outlets, according to the company’s website. Ashar Bari said yesterday that Barry & Sons (Navan) was a property holding company. Barry & Sons (Navan) is currently in receivership.

Prominent among the individuals named yesterday was Sharon Keogan, a former member of Fianna Fáil’s National Executive. She ran as an independent candidate in Meath in the 2011 general election, after failing to get onto the Fianna Fáil ticket. She, along with Seamus O’Neill, were named over a €50,000 tax debt related to a pub and restaurant in Duleek.

A large proportion of the cases published yesterday by the Revenue Commissioners refer to companies whose operations are in some form of insolvency procedure, meaning the state is highly unlikely to ever recoup the full €22.6 million.

When asked about its prospects for recovering the monies owed, the Revenue said it holds “preferential creditor” status under company insolvency law. It said there had not been a special investigation of insolvent companies leading to so many bust firms being named on yesterday’s list.

“There was nothing like that,” a Revenue spokeswoman said.

This article was edited on September 20th.