Ulster Bank seeks to have Seán Dunne declared bankrupt

Bank launches High Court proceedings over failure to satisfy €164m judgement

Ulster Bank is pushing ahead with bankruptcy proceedings in Ireland against developer Seán Dunne over his failure to satisfy a €164 million judgment.

The High Court was told an Irish bankruptcy petition had been served on Mr Dunne in the US. If he decides to contest the Ulster Bank case, the matter may be heard in October.

Papers were served at an address where the Co Carlow born developer is believed to reside in the US and also at the offices of his US attorney, the court heard.

Last month, the American court-appointed trustee managing Mr Dunne’s US bankruptcy supported an application by Ulster Bank to have him adjudicated bankrupt in parallel proceedings in Ireland.

A US judge last week ruled bankruptcy proceedings in Ireland can go ahead.

Mr Dunne, who filed for bankruptcy in the US three months ago, had been attempting to stop proceedings going ahead here but a judge in Connecticut said bankruptcy proceedings in Ireland began six weeks before Mr Dunne filed for protection in the US and most of Mr Dunne's assets are in Ireland as are most of his creditors.

In the High Court in Dublin today, Lyndon MacCann SC, for Ulster Bank, said it was now free to proceed and papers had been served on Mr Dunne on the same day the US court made its ruling.

Mr Dunne was served through the offices of his US attorney and the address where Mr Dunne is believed to be staying while in the US, counsel said. A postman who delivered mail there said a man with an Irish accent lived there.

Counsel said he was awaiting an affidavit of service from the US and wanted the matetr adjourned for a week. At that stage, if Mr Dunne was contesting the proceedings, the court would be asked to set a timetable with a view to having the case raedy for hearing in October.

In those circumstances, Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne adjourned the matter to next Monday.

When Mr Dunne, now living in Greenwich, Connecticut filed for bankruptcy in the US he claimed to have debts of $1 billion and assets of $55 million.

Ulster Bank and the National Asset Management Agency (Nama) want him adjudicated bankrupt by the Irish courts on grounds the vast bulk of his assets and creditors are here.