Debt collection agency of 'Viper' posts €18,000 loss


THE DEBT collection agency run by the Dublin criminal Martin “The Viper” Foley, slipped into the red last year, posting a loss of €18,388 for the 12 months to the end of September 2010.

The performance by Viper Debt Recovery and Repossession Services, which compared to a profit of €27,316 in the previous year, came as sales plunged at the business.

Accounts just posted at the Companies Office show that the firm’s revenues fell by two-thirds from €65,509 to €22,252 in the period.

When expenses of €40,590 were taken into consideration, the business was left with a loss for the year. This, in turn, meant that the profit retained within the company and carried forward, fell from almost €24,000 to €5,342 over the 12 months.

The numbers also show that the company’s cash balances fell by 84 per cent to €2,673 over the period. At the same time, debts due to be paid by Viper Debt Recovery within a year more than tripled to €18,090. This included a VAT bill of €16,043, while no VAT was due a year earlier. Shareholders’ funds, or equity carried forward by the firm’s owners, fell by three-quarters from €23,682 to €5,344 during the year.

The business employed two people, including Mr Foley, over the period. This was one fewer than in the previous year. Two directors are listed – Mr Foley and Sonia Doyle – with directors’ salaries amounting to €20,000, up from €12,285 a year earlier.

The business did not pay a dividend to its owners last year. The accounts state that the company’s main business is in “providing debt recovery solutions”.

Mr Foley, from Cashel Avenue, Crumlin, Dublin, has survived five attempts on his life. The most recent occurred in January 2008 when he was wounded four times after a gunman opened fire on him as he was leaving the Carlisle gym on Lower Kimmage Road.

He first came to the media’s attention in the 1980s as an associate of gang leader Martin Cahill. He has more than 40 convictions, some for assault, robbery and possession of threatening weapons.

In one case he assaulted a garda and broke his jaw. In 1988, he threatened a member of the force with a crossbow when he was followed home by gardaí after leaving a St Patrick’s Day party in Cahill’s Rathmines home.

In March 1984, an IRA gang broke into his house in Crumlin, tied him up and kidnapped him. Gardaí believe the kidnapping was part of a row between Cahill and the IRA.

In February 1996 he was again wounded in a gun attack, this time outside his home. He was hit five times in the side and back and suffered a punctured lung.