Minister for European Affairs Lucinda Creighton has settled the defamation case brought by developer Michael O'Flynn.

In a statement read to the High Court, the minister apologised to Mr O’Flynn, whom she described as an upstanding developer and a person who operates his business to the highest standards.

He had not done any wrong and any suggestion to the contrary was not intended. 

The minister and Mr O'Flynn shook hands in court after the jury was told the case was settled.

Mr O'Flynn had said his reputation was tarnished in a speech on Standards in Public Life and Accountability delivered by the minister at the MacGill Summer School in July 2010 and in subsequent media interviews.

The speech was made after he attended a fundraising golf classic for Fine Gael at the K Club.

A statement was read to the jury on behalf of Ms Creighton after the case settled.

In it she said: "I made comments about Michael O'Flynn and his attendance at a fundraising Golf classic for Fine Gael in particular concerning low standards and wrongdoing.

"I am happy to confirm that Michael O'Flynn is an upstanding developer and person who operates his business to the highest standards.

"He has not done any wrong and any suggestion to the contrary was not intended by me.

"I apologise to Mr O'Flynn and his family for any hurt and distress caused by my comments. I have agreed to pay a contribution towards his legal costs."

In a statement Mr O’Flynn said: "I am very happy that the damage to my reputation caused by Ms Creighton's very public comments in her speech at Glenties and her subsequent interviews with RTÉ and The Irish Times has been recognised in these court proceedings.

"It is regrettable that I was compelled to bring these proceedings and I am delighted to have received an apology in open court from Ms Creighton.

"From day one, all I was seeking was an appropriate apology from Ms Creighton and a donation to Crumlin in recognition of her inappropriate comments about me, and it is appropriate that she has agreed to make a substantial contribution to my legal costs, part of which I will donate to Crumlin Hospital Foundation."

He said he has been "operating in business in Ireland and abroad since the 1970s, and I treasure my good name both in my professional and my private life".