Widow resolves High Court action against financial adviser

Ellen O’Mahony lost more than €400,000 invested in foreign properties

The High Court case had opened before Mr Justice Donald Binchy on Tuesday but later adjourned for talks. Photograph: iStock

The High Court case had opened before Mr Justice Donald Binchy on Tuesday but later adjourned for talks. Photograph: iStock

 

A widow who lost more than €400,000 invested in foreign properties has resolved her High Court action against a financial adviser and two related companies over their alleged failure to properly advise her of the risks involved.

Ellen O’Mahony sued Thomas Connolly and two Castlebar-based firms of which he is a director - Western Premier Properties Ltd trading as Premier Estates Maloney, and financial services provider Morcon Financial Services Ltd, trading as M&C Financial Services.

She claimed the defendants failed to advise her about the levels of risk involved in property investments in Dubai and Portugal.

It was claimed Mr Connolly persuaded her to invest in the various projects. She also claimed the defendants consistently and recklessly misled her and misrepresented the true nature of the investments involved.

Due to the defendants’ alleged negligence and breach of professional duty, she claimed she suffered loss and sought damages.

The defendants, represented by Paul McGarry SC, instructed by Ferry’s solicitors, argued Ms O’Mahony was at all times fully aware of the risk involved with the investments she entered into.

They also claimed her action was statute-barred and there was inordinate and unacceptable delay in bringing it.

She had not been misled nor was any undue pressure put on her to invest, the defendants also pleaded.

The case had opened before Mr Justice Donald Binchy on Tuesday but later adjourned for talks.

Struck out

On Thursday, Bernard Madden SC, instructed by John Geary Solicitors for Ms O’Mahony, said the action had been “resolved to all parties’ satisfaction” and could be “struck out”.

In her proceedings, Ms O’Mahony claimed she made several investments after she received €1.2 million from the sale of her late husband’s pub in Castlebar in 2007.

Those investments were based on representations made to her by her financial adviser, she claimed.

She had sought advice from Mr Connolly from 2004 onwards and had invested €73,000 in a property scheme in Germany. She got her money back, plus a profit of €22,000, the court heard.

She claimed she was later convinced by Mr Connolly in 2007 and 2008 to invest a total €410,000 in properties in Dubai and Portugal. She claimed undue pressure was put on her to invest and she was not properly warned about the risks involved.

The claims were denied.