Senior bankers and their hench people arrive for a meeting of the joint Oireachtas Finance Committee.
From top: Managing Director, Retail Banking at AIB Jim O’Keefe (right); PTSB CEO Eamonn Crowley; Chief Executive Officer Retail Ireland Gavin Kelly (left) and representatives from Bank of Ireland and poacher turned poacher, former FG TD and now banking lobbyist Brian Hayes.
Former solicitor Michael Lynn, who has pleaded not guilty to 21 counts of stealing a total of almost €30m from financial institutions in 2006 and 2007, said he had ‘permission from bankers’ to use money they gave him for mortgages in Ireland to fund property development abroad.
Via RTÉ News:
Mr Lynn said the banks he dealt with were aware of his other borrowings and aware of his investments abroad. He said the minute a loan goes through, the loan is registered within 30-60 days and is visible to the Irish Credit Bureau.
He said credit checks were more powerful than any statement of affairs. He said he was never asked to provide an explanation for undisclosed lending revealed in an ICB check. “I simply didn’t need to,” he said, “they were aware of the other borrowings and aware of the investments abroad“.
Mr Lynn said there was no effort whatsoever by him to conceal his loans. The banks he said, could see every loan he had. He said it bounced out at them. If he had been trying to pull the wool over their eyes or take advantage of them, their own internal checks were showing his loans, he said.
Mr Lynn told defence counsel, Paul Comiskey O’Keeffe that undisclosed lending was never raised with him. No concern was raised with him, he said, he was not brought in for a meeting to see if he was “up to something”. He said what he was up to was doing business, and the banks were enabling him and assisting him in doing that business.
A ‘No’ vote in the upcoming May 31st referendum will damage Ireland’s ability to borrow, according to a ‘major international financial institute’ which sez (without a scintilla of irony):
“Our general view on the Irish situation is: here’s your success story, and what we’re hopeful for is that that success story doesn’t get bumped off course.”
The institute, which draws its directors from Deutsche Bank, Commerzbank, Goldman Sachs, UBS, HSBC and Morgan Stanley, has told its members to be on alert for three strands of news from Ireland: economic performance following a new wave of fiscal austerity; opinion polls on the referendum; and “the rise of Sinn Féin” in polls.
“One of the things we notice is: Sinn Féin is quite supportive of taking a tough line on the promissory note issue. That’s something which will make international investors nervous,” (institute chief economist) Mr (Phil) Suttle said.
International investors. Mmf. We owe them so much.
Pat COX, the one-time Fine Gael presidential contender, briefed the country’s biggest bankers, accountants and business people two weeks ago on the need for austerity in Ireland and the European financial crisis over dinner in the five-star luxury of the Shelbourne Hotel.
Cox socialised with Richie Boucher, the chief executive of Bank of Ireland, and David Duffy, the boss of AIB, as both banks gear up to lay off thousands of staff.
The gourmet private dinner with vintage wines is believed to have taken place in the Shelbourne’s famous Constitution Room, where the founding document governing the State’s sovereignty was drafted in 1922.
More cliché sir? The whole thing was organised by KPMG, which audited Irish Nationwide, which warehoused Seanie Fitz’s loans.
Doubtless, they rested their wing-tips on crouching paupers, drank from jewel encrusted goblets and smoked cigars rolled from pension fund money.