Developer has car seized for second time


PROPERTY DEVELOPER Paddy Kelly has again lost possession of a 7-series BMW to the Dublin City Sheriff arising from a €6 million debt he owes to Dutch-owned ACCBank.

Mr Kelly handed over the car on Monday after the sheriff found an interview published in the International Herald Tribune in 2004 showing him to be the beneficial owner and submitted it to the developer’s lawyers.

Mr Kelly – who said he and his family had debts of between €800 million and €900 million – said his wife “gifted” the car to him and he handed it over to the sheriff “to save a bit of peace”. “What does it matter? It’s Christmas. They can have it. I love walking,” he said.

Mr Kelly said he took a bus to Dublin airport for business trips and he would apply for the State’s free travel pass now that he was 66. Mr Kelly purchased the car for €139,000 in 2003.

The sheriff seized the car from Mr Kelly’s home in Donnybrook, Dublin, in August to repay the bank on foot of a court order but returned it a day later after it was shown to be legally owned by his wife, Maureen.

A spokesman for the sheriff said the Herald Tribune article showed Mr Kelly was the car’s beneficial owner. The article, based on an interview with Mr Kelly, said he had replaced his Rolls Royce with the BMW with “a leather and wood-trimmed interior ”.

The sheriff’s spokesman estimated the car was worth up to €15,000 but that it might fetch a higher price as “a trophy purchase”, given its high-profile history. It is likely to be auctioned in January.

Mr Kelly said he agreed with comments made by his son, Simon, in RTÉ’s Prime Time Investigates programme on Monday, that developers needed to stay to help work through the problems they had created in the country.

However, he said he spent just 30 per cent of his time in Ireland and confirmed he was working as a consultant for a property company in Canada. He was also doing advisory work in Africa, he said.

He was co-operating with the National Asset Management Agency (Nama), which has about two-thirds of his bank debt, he said.

ACCBank, which is not participating in Nama, secured a judgment of €16.5 million against Mr Kelly and his sons, Simon and Christopher, earlier this year.