Quinn Group was doing what it was told to do, court hears

Thursday 20 March 2014 22.49
The prosecution is nearing the end of its case
The prosecution is nearing the end of its case

The former group finance director of the Quinn Group of companies has told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court that the group was doing what it was told to do, in relation to a transaction to unwind Seán Quinn's interest in Anglo Irish Bank.

The transaction is the subject of criminal charges against Anglo's chairman, Seán FitzPatrick, and two former directors of the bank, Patrick Whelan and William McAteer, who deny giving illegal loans to 16 people to buy shares in the bank in July 2008.

Mr Whelan also denies seven charges of being involved in fraudulently altering seven loan facility letters.

Dara O'Reilly was group finance director of the Quinn Group and was also a director of Bazzely, the company set up on behalf of the Quinns to trade in financial instruments called Contracts for Difference (CFDs).

Mr O'Reilly said that Seán Quinn Snr gave directions about the investments to be pursued by Bazzely.

The company was set up in 2005 and initially had CDFs in a number of companies.

However, as the Anglo position increased in 2007, the number of other companies decreased.

Mr O'Reilly said Mr Quinn was not happy about a plan to unwind his CFD position in Anglo.

He said Mr Quinn did not agree to this voluntarily and the Quinn Group was doing what they were told to do.

Another former Quinn Group executive, Colin Morgan, also gave evidence to the trial about a press release issued on behalf of the Quinn family after the transaction eventually took place in July 2008.

The trial has now been adjourned for the day.

There will be legal argument in the case tomorrow.

The prosecution is now nearing the end of its case.