Sean Back from The Dead

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[Sean Quinn leaving the High Court in Dublin, June 2012]

Pat Kenny interviewed Sean Quinn this morning on Newstalk to discuss the Anglo tapes, his reputation as a gambler and his ‘fugitive’ nephew ‘Petey’.

Get a tay.

Pat Kenny: “We all heard of the video of Kiev, where Sean Quinn Jr and Peter Darragh Quinn are seen to be discussing a document and a signature and so on – and whatever about the legalities of it and whatever might be decided in court – it looks decidedly dodgy?”

Sean Quinn: “As regards the family and the way we’ve operated, or the way my children were reared and brought up – they would never be involved in anything like that – we were involved just in getting things done, making money, employing people and doing everything here 100% honest. So when we were put into this position about moving assets and how it would be done and how it wouldn’t – we didn’t do a very good job on that, and that’s not our forte, we’re not into that business.”

Kenny: “When it looked like (you) might have to lie in court, Peter Darragh Quinn had to lie in court – so be it?”

Quinn:
“Well, I don’t know, I don’t know what the details of it is, but you know, it’s not something we’d be used to.”

Kenny: “Are you in touch with Peter Darragh Quinn, and do you think he should just face the music now and get it over with as you and Sean Jr did?”

Quinn: “Well, I think it was a very difficult one, Petey, above all people, we tried to.. we all approached him and said we will do all that we can, anything we can do, we will do it. For example, we approached him in September 20011, more than two years ago and said, ‘We think there are assets that can be moved very quickly and all parties are going to lose them.’ Quinn and Anglo argued who owned them, we said we owned them Anglo said they owned them. But at the end of the day, if we go together and combine together, we will get these assets back, and we will be able to make sure and get them (assets) back. They weren’t interested in that, they didn’t want that. So, as regards when the case came along then for Petey, he was left, again he wrote to Anglo on a number of occasions and said, ‘I will do anything you want me to do, I will go to Russia, I’ll meet you, I’ll do anything you want me to do.’ But they wouldn’t do anything, they said, ‘All we want is the assets back. You give us back the assets, that’s all we want.’ And we said, ‘We can’t possibly give you the assets back, but if you work with us, together we can get the assets back.’ But they said, ‘No, you made the decision, you gave the assets away, you have to get them back.’

Kenny: “Are you in touch with him now (Peter Darragh Quinn)?”

Quinn:
“Yes, oh yeah.”

Kenny:
“And what advice do you give him?”

Quinn: “I don’t give him any advice.”

Kenny: “Is he in Northern Ireland?”

Quinn: “He is, yeah, he is yeah.”

Kenny: “And would you not say to him, come back and face the music and get it over with?”

Quinn: “I wouldn’t say that to Petey, because Petey found himself in an impossible position and I’d like to think that if the case is properly run, over the next two or three years, if the conspiracy case… if the we win the main case,which we will, the conspiracy case falls – now, whether there’s any relief for Petey at that stage, I don’t know. But Petey found himself in a position I can’t do anything about, I want to purge my contempt, I’m not allowed to do it, Anglo knows I’m not allowed to do it and they’re seeking me to the last. I wouldn’t advise any individual, Petey is 35/36 years of age.”

Kenny: “But you would, if you were advising him, say, ‘Wait out the litigation’?”

Quinn: “No, I wouldn’t say anything to him, I’d just say… he’s making his own judgement, I wouldn’t advise Petey one way or the other.”

Kenny: “The question of the ‘Anglo Tapes’, you mentioned some of them that went into the public domain through the Independent News and Media papers, ‘The Independent’, and ‘The Sunday Independent’, and we’ve heard that Sinn Fein have now got their hands on some other Anglo tapes, which they’re not as yet prepared to put into the public domain. By any chance did you or your family supply those tapes to Sinn Fein?”

Quinn: {laughing} “No, no we didn’t, I never saw the tapes.”

Kenny: “I just wondered during the process of discovery for your litigations whether you might have come across any of these, over the past time?”

Quinn: “The family would have received a lot of tapes, but I think the family may only have received about 5% of the tapes that are going to be available. I think that in the criminal proceedings and in the other proceedings that we would be bringing and all the people that we would be involved in – what you’ve seen yet in tapes – and I mean what the tapes does do – it appears to me that the tapes maybe shows a disrespect for the law and for The Regulator and for foreign countries and for various people.
But I think that is going to move on – there’s going to be big discussion between The Department of Finance and The Regulator and Anglo about what are we going to do with Sean Quinn – where are the board meetings at, where’s this, where’s that?
The tapes have got very little interest to me or the the family, because the tapes are at the small end of where we’re going – and where the family is going is much deeper than that, so the tapes are only on the periphery.

 

Earlier in the interview…

Pat Kenny: “We’ve often heard about the story, ‘from rags to riches’ – you’re not in rags now, but you’ve certainly come back from your riches – how do you feel in yourself that you allowed that to happen?”

Sean Quinn: “Well, I feel very hurt, I feel very sad, I feel it was very badly handled. We were a very successful company six years ago, we were turning £45m a week – we were making {£9m a year of profit} £9m a week of profit – a hugely profitable organisation and all of a sudden I stupidly got invoved in buying shares in Anglo Irish Bank.”

Kenny: “There was the share price there, I mean you could see the share price climbing – if you were a regular investor in shares, you’d say, ‘oh there’s an opportunity, there’s a company that’s going up and up and up – and you saw that opportunity, I mean you didn’t really need to know any more, with your gambler’s instinct, you thought this is the moment to get in?”

Sean Quinn: “The gambler is an interesting comment because I know that the media has seen me as a gambler, but I wouldn’t see myself as a gambler.”

Kenny: “Well, they do see you as someone who took on for example, Cement Road Stone and you won that battle and you ended up with the cement factory – you do take chances?”

Quinn: “That’s not gambling, I started off in 1973 just with one lorry and then two and three and four – and the business that I started off in ’73, they’re still there and they’re still in position – so I wasn’t one of these guys who was going to buy a business today and selling it and gearing up. We extended our business all the time, so we always felt that the next move was going to settle our business more and more.”

Kenny: “When I look at the timeline of this – in June 2007, you had 5% of Anglo, I think it was around that time you had around that figure and Anglo’s price was at the top of its curve. If you’d walked away at that point owning 5% of Anglo, bought on contracts for difference – you’d have made a very pretty penny, thank you very much, but you went in again and again and again -why?”

Listen here

(Laura Hutton/Photocall ireland)