Former Irish Life chief ‘not at all surprised’ by Drumm’s tirade against him

Denis Casey finds lack of interest in his disclosures ‘more than curious’

Former Irish Life and Permanent chief executive Denis Casey has said he is ‘not at all surprised’ by David Drumm’s ‘intemperate tirade’ about him Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Former Irish Life and Permanent chief executive Denis Casey has said he is ‘not at all surprised’ by David Drumm’s ‘intemperate tirade’ about him Photograph: Cyril Byrne


Former Irish Life and Permanent chief executive Denis Casey has said he is “not at all surprised” by David Drumm’s “intemperate tirade” about him in the latest extracts to be published from the Anglo Irish Bank private taped telephone conversations dating back to September 2008.

Mr Drumm, Anglo’s chief executive, is heard telling the bank’s head of capital markets, John Bowe, on the telephone call that Irish Life and Permanent’s “f**king chief executive was non-receptive” to Mr Drumm’s idea of a proposed merger of the two institutions as a solution to Anglo’s growing financial problems.

“Insulting language was the stock-in-trade of the Anglo executives,” said Mr Casey in response to the telephone conversation, details of which were published in last weekend’s Sunday Independent.

Mr Drumm told Mr Bowe that at a meeting with Mr Casey and Irish Life chairwoman Gillian Bowler in September 2008 that Ms Bowler listened to Anglo’s proposal but that Mr Casey had a “f**king brick wall built in front of him” and refused to entertain the idea.

Mr Casey told The Irish Times that he swore in an affidavit in June 2010 that relations between Anglo and Irish Life were strained at the time and he believed Anglo was responsible for articles in the media in the latter half of September 2008 that were “potentially very damaging” to Irish Life at an “extraordinarily sensitive time in financial markets” following his rejection of Anglo’s merger proposal.

Too high-risk
“I considered Anglo to be far too high-risk to contemplate any such arrangement,” he said.

The former Irish Life and Permanent chief resigned in February 2009 after it emerged that Irish Life helped Anglo make it look healthier than it was with €7 billion in short-term deposits at the end of September 2008.

Mr Casey said that he would be willing to answer any questions in a public inquiry into the banking crisis and the events leading up to the introduction of the bank guarantee on September 30th, 2008. “I will participate in any inquiry – I have nothing to hide.”

Mr Casey said his affidavit unequivocally states that the support provided by Irish Life to Anglo arose solely as a result of a request by the Central Bank and Financial Regulator that Irish Life participate in a “green jersey agenda” to protect the stability of the Irish financial system as the crisis deepened.

The deposits with Anglo were “accurately recorded and accounted for” in the books of Irish Life, he said, and Irish Life received no fee or other income for the transaction.

Expanded version
Mr Casey said that in October 2010 he provided an expanded version of his affidavit, along with supporting notes and documents, to the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation, which is investigating the deposits.

“I continue to find the lack of interest in following up the disclosures I made in that affidavit more than curious,” said Mr Casey.

The Central Bank has failed to acknowledge receipt of his June 2010 affidavit, he said, and the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement, which also received a copy of the affidavit, has also not expressed any interest in meeting him, he said.

Mr Casey said that Finnish civil servant Peter Nyberg, the author of one of three official reports into the banking crisis, told him that the Anglo-Irish Life deposits were outside the scope of his inquiry.

“At this stage, some 4½ years on from my resignation from Irish Life, I can only again repeat the statement made by me in June 2010,” he said.

“I am anxious that the totality of the circumstances surrounding the execution and presentation of the September 2008 transaction, which occurred in the context of the extensive systemic support and patronage enjoyed by Anglo Irish Bank, are thoroughly investigated as quickly as possible and continue to hold myself available to assist in any such investigation.”