Inspector to report on Bula shortly


The Government-appointed inspector investigating the Bula Resources/Mir Oil deal expects to finish his report by the end of this month. It is now considered unlikely he will interview the former Bula chief executive, Mr Jim Stanley.

Barrister, Mr Lyndon McCann was originally asked to report on January 23rd but sought an extension from the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment. The new deadline is February 28th and Mr McCann expects he will report by that date.

However, Mr McCann is still examining aspects of the controversial deal and carrying out interviews in Ireland and abroad. The critical issue he has to decide on is who owned Mir Oil Development Ltd at the time 101 million Bula shares were transferred to the Virgin Islands company as part of a deal involving a Siberian oil field.

The inspector has been trying to serve legal papers on Mr Stanley in relation to his decision not to attend for interview. Mr Stanley is understood to be somewhere in eastern Russia. Mr Stanley negotiated the Mir Oil deal on behalf of Bula.

Mr Craig Bond, the Australian businessman who has said he is the owner of Mir Oil, has also not attended for interview with Mr McCann. Mr McCann's report is likely to be lengthy and to contain a substantial amount of complex information concerning the deal. However, it will also answer some straightforward questions, in particular who profited from the transfer of the 101 million Bula shares, and how it came about that a misleading statement was made by Bula in relation to drilling test results from the Siberian oil field.

It is understood Mr McCann has formed a view on the central questions but is still open to considering innocent explanations backed up by supporting evidence.