Sean Quinn, formerly Ireland’s richest man, and two members of his family have been branded dishonest, deceitful and evasive by a Dublin court, which found them guilty of contempt.
The judge ruled the bankrupt businessman had blocked Anglo Irish Bank from seizing international property worth hundreds of millions of euros – in defiance of a High Court order issued last year.
“They have engaged in a complex, complicated and, no doubt, costly series of steps designed to put the assets of the [International Property Group] beyond the reach of Anglo, in a blatant, dishonest and deceitful manner,” said Justice Elizabeth Dunne in her judgment.
Quinn, once worth about €4 billion, saw his business empire collapse after investing in the now-nationalised Anglo. He was declared bankrupt earlier this year.
The Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, created from the remains of Anglo, claims all three men attempted to transfer theownership of property to offshore companies in Latin America.
Although the Quinns admitted doing this, they said they had only taken such actions before the High Court issued orders preventing them from doing so.
The Irish Bank Resolution Corporation claims the Quinn family owes it almost €3 billion.
Speaking after the ruling, Quinn denied being dishonest. He will be sentenced on Friday.