Former Anglo CEO David Drumm gives evidence at bankruptcy trial

Wednesday 21 May 2014 21.43
1 of 2
David Drumm is the first witness in today's hearing
David Drumm is the first witness in today's hearing
Lawyers argue that David Drumm is entitled to bankruptcy
Lawyers argue that David Drumm is entitled to bankruptcy

Former chief executive of Anglo Irish Bank David Drumm has said that he knew "the buck stopped with him" when it came to informing a US bankruptcy court about his financial affairs.

Mr Drumm was giving evidence at a trial in Boston, where his entitlement to bankruptcy is being challenged by IBRC and the court-appointed trustee.

He also said that when he was filling out the initial application forms, he forgot to include a cash transfer to his wife.

More than three-and-a-half years after filing for bankruptcy in the US, Mr Drumm's case today came to court for trial.

So far the court has heard how he went from earning approximately $18m between 2004 and 2009 to not having enough cash to pay his debts in 2010.

In explaining why Mr Drumm did not give the court a full picture of his financial affairs, his lawyers told the court that Mr Drumm's case is "not run of the mill" and is relatively complicated.

However, lawyers for IBRC and the trustee have said that only fraud can explain how a former bank chief executive could get such basic and elementary information requests wrong.

Just after 7.30am this morning, lawyers brought in the legal documents which they say make the case against Mr Drumm's entitlement to bankruptcy.

About an hour later, Mr Drumm arrived without responding to questions from the awaiting media.

Lawyers for the court-appointed trustee and the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation outlined their objections to his bankruptcy, describing Mr Drumm as a sophisticated banker.

However, they said that if there was ever a debtor who had not earned discharge, who had made a mockery of the bankruptcy process, it was Mr Drumm, who they said had displayed callous indifference to his responsibilities.

Mr Drumm's lawyers in turn said the lawyers for the bank and trustee were looking to introduce evidence that was not relevant.

They have said that no matter how much Mr Drumm transferred to his wife from 2008 onwards, it is only the transactions made in the year before filing for bankruptcy that count towards claim of fraudulent activity, and in that timeframe he only transferred $73,000 to his wife, $50,000 of which was to pay taxes in Ireland.

Questioning of Mr Drumm is for the moment focused on how he filled out his initial bankruptcy documents, and failed to disclose several transfers made in the two years prior to his application.

He initially claimed he thought he was only supposed to declare property related transfers, but admitted, he had only included one transfer of assets on the form, relating to his interest in the family home in Malahide, which he attempted to transfer to his wife.

He admitted that he did not include two of the three property-related transfers made by him during the time period.

He also accepted that he had never been advised not to include such transfers of cash or cars.

Mr Drumm also said he understood that in filling out the form, the "buck stopped with him".

After being shown multiple snippets of documents, and referring to statements he has previously made at earlier depositions, Mr Drumm has told counsel for the bank and trustee that they are confusing him.

He is expected to continue in the witness box for some time today.