Workers told Quinns ‘would never have involvement in company again’

Sean Quinn Jnr brings unfair dismissal case to Employment Appeals Tribunal

Employees of Quinn Insurance were told by a joint administrator of the company in 2010 that the Quinn family “would never ever have any involvement in this insurance company ever, ever, ever again”, an Employment Appeals Tribunal heard today.

Employees of Quinn Insurance were told by a joint administrator of the company in 2010 that the Quinn family “would never ever have any involvement in this insurance company ever, ever, ever again”, an Employment Appeals Tribunal heard today.

 

Employees of Quinn Insurance were told by a joint administrator of the company in 2010 that the Quinn family “would never ever have any involvement in this insurance company ever, ever, ever again”, an Employment Appeals Tribunal heard today.

The joint receiver, Michael McAteer confirmed he made the remarks but said it was in the context of the Quinns not being a potential bidder for the firm they had previously controlled.

Sean Quinn Jnr, who was employed at the company, brought an unfair dismissal case after being made redundant in August 2011.

Today is just the second day of evidence following an initial session in May, 2013.

A previous hearing heard his claims that he had been on the receiving end of a “campaign of victimisation and harassment” and forced out.

However, the tribunal heard Mr Quinn had been head of UK operations, a role no longer required as they were unable to conduct business in the UK.

Mr Quinn, who had been on a basic salary of € 75,000 before bonus, had declined a number of alternative, lower paid and less senior positions.

Asked about several comments he made regarding the company and the Quinn family, Mr McAteer acknowledged he had said they would no longer have a role in the insurance company.

“At the time there was a sales process; that process was being managed by ourselves...there was no Quinn family proposal put to us, therefore the Quinns could not be involved in purchasing the business,” he said.

However, Mr Quinn believes he was deliberately targeted as part of a “clearing out” of his family, his barrister Ercus Stewart said.

The tribunal heard that of eight family members originally at the company, just one had made the transition to Liberty Mutual, the eventual buyers.

At one stage, Mr Stewart put it to Mr McAteer that at a meeting with five employees in 2010, “you pointed at each one of the employees (individually) and you said: ‘you’re a friend of Sean Jnr’.”

“You said in no uncertain terms that they shouldn’t be associated with Sean Jnr.”

Mr McAteer said he would not have used that language.

In several exchanges between Mr Quinn and Mr McAteer, the former outlined his concerns at his treatment.

The tribunal heard his management role was eventually replaced by two people who together are paid over € 200,000.

Mr Stewart said: “Did you tell him that he had no future in the company and would he take redundancy?”, to which Mr McAteer replied that he had not.

Joint administrator Grant Thornton was appointed to Quinn Insurance in March, 2010 when 900 redundancies were sought.

The hearing continues today.