Garda made inquiries into ventures linked to Seán Quinn in the past year

Former billionaire ‘not aware’ of any investigation since he emerged from bankruptcy

The Garda has made inquiries over the past year into ventures linked to the former billionaire Seán Quinn in the period since he emerged from bankruptcy, according to sources.

Mr Quinn (75) told The Irish Times that he is not aware of any Garda inquiry into any of the ventures he got involved with since he emerged from bankruptcy in January 2015 .

“I am not aware of any investigation into anything I set up,” Mr Quinn said. “I am not aware of anything.”

However, sources with knowledge of some of these businesses have said they are aware of inquiries made by An Garda Síochána in respect of their funding.


In one instance it is known that Garda officers visited the premises of the business and examined books and records, while in another instance the inquiry involved interviews with parties in a venture in which Mr Quinn had taken an interest.

The sources said they did not know of any information that might have been of particular interest to a Garda investigation.


It is also understood that the Garda inquiries have included the examination of material in the possession of the liquidators of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC), the State-owned entity that seized a large international property portfolio that was formerly owned by the adult children of Mr Quinn.

During a lengthy international court battle between the IBRC and the persons and entities that had control of these properties, a large amount of rent, amounting to tens of millions of euro, went missing.

While the family of Mr Quinn said they had engaged the services of others to help put the assets beyond the reach of the IBRC, they said they had been double-crossed and had lost control of the assets and the rental income.

However, the IBRC told the courts it did not accept the family’s account as to what had happened.

Eventually the dispute between the family and the IBRC was settled by way of an agreement that involved the family agreeing to do what it could to help the IBRC assert its rights over the portfolio.

It is understood the IBRC never came across any material showing any of the missing rent roll coming back into this jurisdiction.

Paid consultant

After he emerged from bankruptcy, Mr Quinn worked for a time as a paid consultant to the group that had taken over the Quinn businesses on the Cavan/Monaghan border, though the relationship ended in 2016.

He was associated with a company called Belbridge Consultancy Ltd, which was incorporated in 2016. However, he later resigned as a director of the company and divested his shares.

The company is now the trading company of a successful online gambling business called QuinnBet.

Mr Quinn was at one stage one of Ireland’s richest business figures, if not the richest, having built up a series of concrete and other manufacturing operations on the border, as well as an insurance business and an extensive property portfolio.

He went into bankruptcy in January 2012. He was jailed for nine weeks in November 2012 for contempt of court, arising from his actions in relation to the case taken by the IBRC against the family and its attempt to assert its rights over an international property portfolio.

Colm Keena

Colm Keena

Colm Keena is an Irish Times journalist. He was previously legal-affairs correspondent and public-affairs correspondent