EBS obtains €8.8m judgment against Campbells

Judge rules construction business owners William and Kristine Campbell failed to make out arguable defence

In his judgment, Mr Justice George Birmingham said Kristine Campbell’s assertions were “quite surprising”. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

In his judgment, Mr Justice George Birmingham said Kristine Campbell’s assertions were “quite surprising”. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

 

The Educational Building Society has secured summary judgment for some €8.8 million against an estranged couple over unpaid loans.

Mr Justice George Birmingham ruled Kristine and William Campbell, joint owners of a construction business, had failed to make out an arguable defence entitling them to a full hearing of the matter.

EBS sought the orders against Ms Campbell, Hybrasil Court, Circular Road, Galway, and Mr Campbell, Oldenway Business Park, Ballybrit, Galway over their alleged failure to repay three loans advanced between 2006 and 2008.

EBS obtained judgment for €8.8m against Mr Campbell from the Master of the High Court last year but that judgment was appealed to the High Court. EBS also sought judgment for a similar amount against Ms Campbell.

Both claimed they had arguable defences. Mr Campbell argued he reached an agreement with a senior manager in EBS in 2011 under which it was agreed not to take any further steps in relation to the loans for some years if additional security was provided.

Ms Campbell argued she was a vulnerable person who had acted under undue influence of her husband. The EBS should have inquired whether she had exercised any independent judgment in relation to the loans, she further submitted.

Mr Campbell had asked her to sign certain loan documents and, she claimed, told her: “If you don’t sign this we will lose everything.” She said she signed documents in a bid to save her marriage and had no independent legal advice at the time.

In his judgment, Mr Justice Birmingham said Ms Campbell’s assertions were “quite surprising”.