John Delaney has failed to comply with a court order to provide the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement with certain details about legal actions involving him, a High Court judge has said.
Lawyers representing the former CEO of the Football Association of Ireland dispute this and argued before the court that he has complied with the order as much as he possibly can.
Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds told the High Court today that, as far as she was concerned, Mr Delaney had not complied with last month's order to provide the ODCE with the information it sought regarding litigation involving the former FAI chief.
While the judge voiced her displeasure over the non-compliance, the court was prepared to give Mr Delaney more time to comply and adjourned the matter to a date next month.
The ODCE has sought the information as part of its review into recommendations that some 1,100 documents, relating Mr Delaney, seized by the corporate watchdog, are covered by Legal Professional Privilege (LPP).
The recommendations were contained in a review by independent lawyers to help establish how many of some 280,000 documents, seized in February 2020, are covered by LPP.
Any documents deemed covered by LPP cannot be used by the ODCE as part of its ongoing criminal investigation into certain matters at the FAI.
Mr Delaney claims that the documents contained certain legal advice given to him regarding litigation that occurred during the many years he was with the association, and therefore are covered by LPP.
The ODCE, which does not know what is contained in the documents, claims that LPP may not apply to many of these documents.
In a sworn statement to the court, Mr Delaney said despite the best efforts of he and his lawyers to conduct a review of documents, held by the ODCE, he has not had sufficient time to provide the court with the information it requires.
He also claims that they require copies of certain documents from the ODCE to fully comply with the order.
However, he and his legal team have not been able to obtain these due to factors including time constraints, and a refusal by the ODCE to provide him with such copies.
The failure to get these copies have made it impossible to make meaningful submissions to the court so it can assess what documents are covered by LLP, he added.
It was his intention to apply to the court for a direction that he be provided with the copies of these documents.
Mr Delaney also criticised the ODCE and said he could not understand its dogmatic refusal to engage with his lawyers and help expedite the process.
Mr Delaney also rejected claims by the ODCE that he was delaying the process.
That allegation against him, he said, could "not be taken seriously" in the context where the ODCE "has been guilty of culpable delay".
Paul McGarry SC for Mr Delaney, disputed that his client had not complied with the court's order, adding it had been difficult for him to provide the information sought by the director.
Some of the material regarding litigation involving Mr Delaney is being held by other solicitors, and his client has not been able to obtain it, counsel added.
Kerida Naidoo SC for the ODCE said as far as it was concerned, Mr Delaney had not complied with the order.
It was now asking the court to fix a hearing date early next year so all issues relating to LLP could be considered.
The ODCE told the court it remains sceptical about assertions that 1,100 documents relating to Mr Delaney are covered by LPP.
Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds said a process that commenced two years ago was now "going around in circles".
She was adjourning the matter to a date in December to allow Mr Delaney comply with the court's order.