David Drumm to return to Ireland to fight 33 charges

Former Anglo Irish Bank chief abandons legal challenge against extradition from US

Former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm is accused of offences including forgery, conspiracy and false accounting. File photograph: Josh Reynolds/The Irish Times

Former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm is accused of offences including forgery, conspiracy and false accounting. File photograph: Josh Reynolds/The Irish Times

 

Former Anglo Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm has abandoned his legal challenge against extradition from the United States.

The ex-banker has decided to return home to Dublin to fight 33 charges relating to transactions carried out while he ran Anglo as the lender edged towards collapse during the 2008 financial crisis.

Mr Drumm’s lawyer, Daniel Fetterman, told a Boston court at a brief hearing that the former banker agreed to be extradited to Ireland, ending his four-month challenge against removal from the US.

Mr Fetterman said his client “would like to waive his right” to a hearing scheduled for March 1st to determine probable cause that he committed the alleged offences and “consent to extradition”.

Mr Drumm’s court appearance was his fourth in the US extradition case since his arrest in October on a request from the Government and comes after two failed attempts to seek his release on bail.

He is accused of offences including forgery, conspiracy and false accounting for loans advanced in 2008 designed to buttress Anglo’s plunging share price as the global financial crisis reached Irish shores.

At Thursday’s court hearing the 49-year-old was walked by two US marshals into courtroom 17 on the fifth floor of the John Joseph Moakley US Courthouse, with his hands cuffed behind him and wearing trainers, ankle shackles and what appeared to be green prison scrubs.

At the 16-minute hearing, Mr Drumm signed a three-page affidavit in the courtroom in front of magistrate judge Donald Cabell agreeing not to continue fighting extradition in the American courts.

The former banker said in the affidavit that he “has and will contest the charges alleged against me in Ireland”.

Rights waived voluntarily

“In effect, what you are signalling here today is that you are giving up those rights and seek to hasten your extradition?” the judge asked.

“Yes, your honour,” said Mr Drumm.

The judge brought the Dubliner’s litigation before the Boston court to a close, saying: “This essentially ends this portion of the matter.”

Raising one other issue, Mr Fetterman asked the court to “keep the record open” to allow Mr Drumm attend a Boston immigration facility before his extradition so he can be biometrically tested along with his wife and daughters as part of their applications for US resident green cards.

Sarah Walters, assistant US attorney, told the court this was a matter for the US marshals, not the US attorney’s office.

Shortly after the hearing, the judge signed “a certificate of extraditability”, moving the matter to the State Department for processing and paving the way for Mr Drumm’s return to Ireland.

Mr Drumm has been in custody since his arrest on October 10th, mostly in the maximum-security Plymouth County Correctional Facility, about an hour’s drive south of Boston.

It is expected to take several weeks to arrange his return to Ireland and co-ordinate his handover with the Irish authorities.