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Archive for July, 2019

Shocking Threat To Social Welfare Old Age Pensions By Fine Gael Minister

All Pensioners on Contributory and Non-Contributory Old Age Pensions To Be Confined to Minimum Essential Standard of Living in their Old Age After A lifelong Contribution to Irish Society According to Minister Regina Doherty

All State pensions should not be equal, says Minister  https://wp.me/pKzXa-1ma

Minister says welfare system ‘not working’ for many and needs to be changed (At Cost to “Better Off” Social Welfare Recipients-PH)

It is not “fair” that some older people receive State pensions that are more than they need while others on the same amount live in poverty, Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty has said.

Ms Doherty said she wants to reform the welfare system and bring an end to €5 top-ups on every welfare payment being announced on budget days.

Kitty Holland , Irish Times: Saturday, July 6, 2019, 01:00

The welfare system is not “working” for thousands of households living in poverty, and radical change to systems is needed, Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty has said. Signalling an intention to end traditional across-the-board welfare increases on budget day, the Minister said she wanted a far more targeted approach to guarantee a minimum basic income for everyone.

“As a society we would like to ensure that everybody has at least a floor which they will never go under,” she said.

Speaking on the fringes of her department’s pre-budget forum, at which advocacy groups set out their “asks” for the budget in October, Ms Doherty argued that the welfare system should guarantee a minimum essential standard of living (MESL) for everyone.

The MESL for six household “types”, in rural and urban settings, is calculated annually by the Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice. The adequacy of welfare payments to meet this is assessed, with shortfalls recorded as “adequacy gaps”.

This year’s report finds the deepest income inadequacy is “now exclusively found in households headed by one adult, ie single working-age adult and lone-parent households, or in households with older children”.

A single parent of two children – one in primary school and one in secondary, on welfare and living in a town – will need €428.50 per week for a MESL, but gets only €358.90 – an “adequacy gap” of €69.60.

The same family in a rural location needs €500.44 a week, gets the same as the urban family, and struggles with an “adequacy gap” of €141.53.

Pensioner couple

In contrast, an urban pensioner couple dependent on welfare needs €314.60 a week for a MESL, but gets €425.82 – €111.22 more than they need. The same couple in the countryside needs €386.11, gets the same as the urban couple, and so has €39.71 more than they need each week.

“These issues raise important questions about the relativities between social welfare rates,” says the report.

Ms Doherty said a new approach, if achieved, would require systems change, legislative change and political as well as societal “buy-in”. It would not happen in one budget cycle, she said, but she wanted discussions on moving towards such an approach.

“It’s not about deserving more or less because everyone deserves an essential standard of living. But if you live in an area where you have public transport outside your door and can get on your bus with a free travel card well then you don’t have that cost…whereas if you live in Glenroe and you have no public transport and you have to have a car or a bicycle [your costs are higher].”

Levels of poverty

She said it could be administratively onerous, but this was not a reason to ignore the persistent levels of poverty among some groups – particularly lone-parent families and households headed by people with disabilities – despite welfare increases and a recovering economy.

“When you break it down there are some who are taking more than a minimum essential living standard from the State but there are a lot of people who are not….So there is a whole different variety of circumstances that need to be looked at, that doesn’t get addressed when you give everybody the same, across-the-board, because you still leave the people at most risk behind.”

© 2019 irishtimes.com

All State pensions should not be equal, says Minister

Kitty Holland

 

Last Updated: Saturday, July 6, 2019, 01:00

It is not “fair” that some older people receive State pensions that are more than they need while others on the same amount live in poverty, Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty has said.

Ms Doherty said she wants to reform the welfare system and bring an end to €5 top-ups on every welfare payment being announced on budget days.

She said everyone should have a basic minimum income guaranteeing that they can participate in society but that the current system was not delivering this.

The Minister said “if we are really serious about everybody enjoying the benefits of a recovering economy, well then we need to look at those who are most at risk of poverty and the people in consistent poverty as opposed to just doing a little bit for everybody”.

The same payments for similar households in different parts of Ireland may not be appropriate, she said, adding that political and public “buy in” would be needed to explain to the “lady in Donegal” why she was going to get “more, or less” than “the lady somewhere else” in the State.

“So a long conversation will be needed,” she said, adding that the changes would not be achieved in one budget cycle.

Ms Doherty said that despite a recovering economy and increases in welfare payments, 120,000 children still lived in consistent poverty, while some welfare recipients were getting more than they needed, including pensioner couples in urban areas.

“It’s not just about the rates. It’s about ensuring everyone has a minimum standard of living. What we have at the moment is people being left behind because we’re quite happy to leave everybody the same and everyone is not the same.”

© 2019 irishtimes.com

 

Categories: Uncategorized

Anglo-Irish Bank Fraud on Small Investors With Collusion of Government–Full Dossier

Report on Director of Corporate Enforcement (ODCE) on Collapse of Sean Fitzpatrick Trial Still Not Published in July 2019!!

2016-Many Billions in Pension Lump Sums, Redundancy Lump Sums, Life Savings of Retired Small Traders including Sole Traders, Shares held by Credit Unions etc, Wiped Out Through Fraud Committed by Convicted Leading Bankers With The Collusion of Central Bank, Financial Regulatory Authority and Government’s Department of Finance https://wp.me/pKzXa-1lF

Sunday July 24, 2016-Paddy Healy

Has a Dirty Deal Been Hatched Between Defence and Prosecution (the Government) to Protect the State from Being Forced to Compensate Small Shareholders in Anglo?-Paddy Healy

Will the then regulator, the then head of the central bank, the then secretary of the Department of Finance be called (by sub-poena) by Defence to give mitigation of sentence evidence as to whether they encouraged the fraudsters or simply allowed the fraud to continue? Had they full advance knowledge? Or has a Dirty Deal on Length of Sentence been Done between Government(DPP) and the Fraudsters?

The stench is rising! Damning files reveal Central Bank’s role in €7bn banking fraud – The Sunday Business Post  19/06/2016

MINISTER NOONAN FAILS TO ANSWER DEMAND FOR COMPENSATION FOR SMALL SHAREHOLDERS IN ANGLO BY SEAMUS HEALY TD IN DAIL REPLY TO PARLIAMENTARY QUESTION-PENSIONERS, REDUNDANT WORKERS, RETIRED SOLE TRADERS ETC DEFRAUDED –Government, Department of Finance had Full Knowledge!!

<!– [if lt IE 9]> http://www.businesspost.ie/wp-content/themes/smart-mag/js/html5.js <![endif]–>

“Official files and secret notes reveal that a €7 billion fraud that led to the criminal conviction of three bankers earlier this month was “potentially based on encouragement” from the Central Bank, The Sunday Business Post can reveal.

The secret documents reveal how the state had intimate knowledge that the two banks were helping each other out during the financial crisis in order to make their balance sheets appear stronger to investors and the stock market.

The day before Anglo Irish Bank was nationalised in January 2009, Con Horan, the regulator’s then prudential director, told a high-powered meeting that his banking watchdog had an “awareness” that the bank was “working together” with Irish Life & Permanent, using what was called “back-to-back loans”.

He then told senior Department of Finance, NTMA and Central Bank officials that this working relationship was “potentially based on encouragement from Dame Street”.

Horan said he was meeting the bank’s auditors to discuss the arrangement. He also explained how the circular transaction worked in January 2009 in order to use money from IL&P to boost Anglo’s customer deposits.

Horan was asked by Mary O’Dea, another senior official in the Central Bank, whether or not the €7 billion deal would have to be disclosed in Anglo’s accounts.

Horan said: “Auditors are comfortable… Current accounts will have lot more disclosures.”

On February 25, 2009 documents marked “secret” by the Financial Regulator also saw the state’s banking watchdog admit internally that Anglo and IL&P bankers might be able to argue that the €7 billion fraud was only carried out because of “encouragement”–

“In a document prepared for its board, the regulator admitted: “There is also information available that might be argued to support a defence against accusations of market abuse, specifically in relation to knowledge within the Financial Regulator/Central Bank, but also more generally in relation to the role of the Department of Finance, Central Bank and Financial Regulator encouraging institutions to co-operate with each other in extremely difficult circumstances where the very existence of the Irish financial system was in some doubt.”

There is also evidence in notes kept of meetings of the Domestic Standing Group – made up of the Department of Finance, the Central Bank and the Financial Regulator – that the state was monitoring how Anglo and IL&P were working together in the months before the €7 billion fraud…. SB POST

Full Article:

http://www.businesspost.ie/damning-files-reveal-central-banks-role-in-e7bn-banking-fraud/

Business Post   19/06/2016

 

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Sentencing of Anglo and Irish Life and Permanent Top Dog Fraudsters Adjourned until Friday

Thousands lost their life savings due to the fraud!

Wed July 27,2016

Is there a dirty deal between the Government and the Defendants To Protect the state from compensation claims?

At the sentence hearing on Monday Last, defence pointed out that there was no loss to the bank or to the state due to the fraud

There are no reports of the Prosecution on behalf of the Government pointing out that thousands of small investors, including pensioners,redundant workers, retired small business and trades people, credit unions etc, were defrauded of their life savings

There were several high ranking character witnesses called in support of mitigation of sentence by the defence

But there were no victim impact statements allowed by defrauded pensioners etc though these are criminal convictions for defrauding these victims.

Prosecutor O’Higgins SC,for the prosecution (State),  told the judge that the maximum effective sentence was ten years according to newspaper reports

But  no  demand for the maximum sentence to be applied was reported.

The defense on behalf of the convicted bankers did not call the then regulator, the then governor of the central bank, the then secretary general of the Department of Finance

Had the defence, instructed by the bankers and the government (who instructs the prosecuting lawyers) done a deal to prevent small investors getting their money back???

Lawyers for the defendants and the Government must take instructions from their clients unless such instructions are illegal, unethical or in breach of court rules.

Hence the players in any deal are not the lawyers but the government and the convicted bankers. The interests of those actually defrauded were not represented!!!

Noonan’s Non Reply To Seamus Healy TD in Dáil: Will Small Shareholders be Compensated??

QUESTION NO:  115

DÁIL QUESTION addressed to the Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan)
by Deputy Seamus Healy for WRITTEN ANSWER on 23/06/2016

 

“To ask the Minister for Finance if he will recommend that small shareholders be compensated by the State at least to the extent of the entitlement of depositors under the Bank Deposit Guarantee Scheme, given the conviction of two former executives of Anglo-Irish Bank on a charge of conspiring to defraud investors, that Government and his Department, the Office of The Regulator and the Central Bank were all aware of the relevant transaction in advance of the publication of the misleading accounts of the affairs of the bank and the other evidence and remarks of the Judge in Court (details supplied see further down); and if he will make a statement on the matter.-Seamus Healy TD

REPLY Of Minister NOONAN

“As previously outlined to the Deputy in my answer to parliamentary question number 108 on 16th June 2016, Anglo Irish Bank was nationalised on 15 January 2009 and on that date the Minister for Finance acquired all of the ordinary and preference share capital by virtue of the provisions of the Anglo Irish Bank Act 2009, therefore, as of that date, the ownership of the shares in Anglo Irish Bank would have transferred to the Minister for Finance. If the Government had not nationalised Anglo Irish Bank, the Bank had the potential to collapse and impact on the entire Irish banking system. At that time, shares were valued on the market  in the region of €0.22, however in the event of the Bank failing, Anglo Irish Bank s shares would have been worthless.

Sections 22-32 of the Anglo Irish Bank Corporation Act 2009 provide that the Minister for Finance shall appoint an Assessor at an appropriate time having regard to the public interest. The job of the Assessor is to independently determine the fair and reasonable aggregate value, if any, of the transferred shares and extinguished rights and the consequent amount of compensation, if any, that may be payable to persons in respect of Anglo Irish Bank shares transferred and rights extinguished under the Act. Since the liquidation of IBRC in February 2013, there has been no timeframe set for the appointment of an Assessor.

An update on the liquidation of IBRC can be found at http://www.finance.gov.ie/sites/default/files/Progress%20update%20report_31%20Dec%202015_0.pdf

The Deposit Guarantee Scheme (“DGS”) was established to protect depositors in the event of a bank, building society or credit union authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland being unable to repay deposits. The DGS is part of the Central Bank of Ireland s strategy to ensure that the best interests of consumers of financial services are protected. The DGS is administered by the Central Bank of Ireland and is funded by the credit institutions covered by the scheme. The DGS was not established to protect equity investors.”-Minister Noonan

 

 

Details Supplied by Seamus Healy TD to Minister Noonan With His Parliamentary  Question.

Sunday Business Post 19/06/2016

“In a document prepared for its board, the regulator admitted: “There is also information available that might be argued to support a defence against accusations of market abuse, specifically in relation to knowledge within the Financial Regulator/Central Bank, but also more generally in relation to the role of the Department of Finance, Central Bank and Financial Regulator encouraging institutions to co-operate with each other in extremely difficult circumstances where the very existence of the Irish financial system was in some doubt.”

There is also evidence in notes kept of meetings of the Domestic Standing Group – made up of the Department of Finance, the Central Bank and the Financial Regulator – that the state was monitoring how Anglo and IL&P were working together in the months before the €7 billion fraud.-Sunday Business Post, 19/06/2016

Full Report

http://www.businesspost.ie/damning-files-reveal-central-banks-role-in-e7bn-banking-fraud/

Business Post   19/06/2016

Remarks of Judge in Court- Colm Keena, Irish Times, June 9,2016

“These were classic back-to-back transactions, done for public optics only,” the judge said in his February ruling. He said he believed the regulator “condoned optics-based balance sheet management” as it did not want Irish banks to “go down”. The Irish authorities were frightened by what they had seen with Northern Rock and they had seen central banks in other jurisdictions help their banking systems.

Neary and Hurley were “hands on” and entirely involved in the effort to save the Irish banking system, the judge said. They had put the green jersey into Casey’s mind, and Casey had acted on it.  

Declan Brennan,Irish Times, , May 5, 2016, 18:07

 

Mr Peter  Fitzpatrick (Irish Life and Permanent) who was acquitted of the conspiracy to defraud investors said in a statement to gardai quoted in court:

“He said that prior to January 2009, ILP never received any request for clarification from Anglo or its auditors, the then financial regulator Patrick Neary or the then Central Bank governor John Hurley

‘Political expediency’

“I feel that the matter was dealt with as a matter of political expediency with no reference to the substance of the transaction.

“I believe that the actions of the [financial] regulator post 30 September 2008 effectively shows [sic] that he tacitly if not explicitly approved such actions. Without this understanding the transaction would have in all certainty not have taken place,” he told gardaí­.

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Sunday Independent, 12/06/2016

Dearbhail McDonald Legal editor

 

 On one end of the line was John Bowe, Anglo’s head of capital markets. At the other was Mary Elizabeth Donoghue from the Office of the Financial Regulator.

The call occurred on October 28, 2008, weeks before publication of Anglo’s preliminary results on December 3, 2008. Critically, it also came weeks after the execution of a spectacular €7.2bn scheme of circular transactions between Anglo and Irish Life & Permanent…..

“Let’s call a spade a spade,” said Donoghue as Bowe explained the motivation behind the balance sheet window dressing exercise, insisting it had nothing to do with the liquidity crisis then engulfing banks around the globe, including our own.

The conversation included this exchange:

Bowe: “This was purely about avoiding an issue of confidence in the bank.”

Donoghue: “Yeah, so it looked like an asset manager had placed money with yourselves?”

Bowe “Exactly.”

Donoghue “It forms part of the… the customer deposit, yeah.”

Bowe: “Exactly.”

Donoghue: “Yeah. That’s fine, that’s grand, that’s what I – even my limited reading of it now that’s what I read it to be and I just wanted – let’s not get too excited about what’s happening here and let’s call it what it is. That’s fine.”      

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Drumm Trial Irish Independent  06/06/2018

https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/courts/long-read-former-anglo-ceo-drumms-confidence-trick-on-the-market-not-just-a-cheat-but-a-crime-36984340.html

 

Ken Foy

Irish Independent January 5 2017 2:30 AM

 

 

 

Three former bank executives who are serving sentences for criminal conspiracy in a €7bn market deception scheme spent the festive period in jail at Loughan House open prison in Co Cavan.

The trio are former Anglo Irish Bank executives John Bowe (52), Willie McAteer (65) and former Irish Life and Permanent (ILP) group chief executive Denis Casey (56).

None of the men was granted temporary release from the open prison – although it is not known if any of them even applied to get out over the Christmas period.

Bowe, McAteer and Casey were transferred together to the Co Cavan facility in late September after spending two months in Mountjoy Prison’s training unit.

Jail sources said the three disgraced bankers had an “impeccable” behaviour record since being locked up last July.

Bowe, from Glasnevin, Dublin, McAteer, of Greenrath, Tipperary Town, and Casey, from Raheny, Dublin, had all pleaded not guilty to conspiring together and with others to defraud by setting up a €7.2bn circular transaction scheme between March 1 and September 30, 2008 to bolster Anglo’s balance sheet with the intention of misleading investors.

On day 89 of the longest-running criminal trial in the State’s history, a jury convicted Casey. It had already returned guilty verdicts on Bowe and McAteer a week earlier.

Jailing McAteer for three-and-a-half years, Judge Martin Nolan told him he had authorised the transactions when he knew what he was doing was underhand, deceitful and corrupt.

He told Bowe that he was the chief man in Anglo’s treasury room and he had failed to act with honesty.

He imposed a two-year sentence on Bowe, telling him the lower sentence was because he was “a lesser functionary” and not a board member at the bank.

Judge Nolan told Casey that he had made a grave error of judgment in authorising the transaction with Anglo. He jailed him for two years and nine months.

In October, it emerged that the trio were to appeal against their convictions at a hearing that is due to take place in March.

The three men lodged appeals against their convictions and a hearing date was fixed for the week beginning March 6.

Mr Justice George Birmingham said a week-long appeal hearing would be “the longest appeal” since the court was established in 2014.

 

 

Sentencing of Anglo and Irish Life and Permanent Top Dog Fraudsters Adjourned until Friday

Wed July 27,2016

Anglo trial: Sentences of two to three-and-a-half years for trio convicted of fraudulent €7.2 billion transaction

Denis Casey, William McAteer and John Bowe were found guilty of conspiracy to defraud last month.

Journal.ie   Jul 29th 2016,

Updated 11.55am

THREE FORMER BANKING executives have been jailed for conspiring in a “deceitful and corrupt” €7 billion market deception scheme.

Judge Martin Nolan said that former former Anglo Irish Bank executives John Bowe (52) and Willie McAteer (65), and the former Group Chief Executive of Irish Life and Permanent plc. (ILP), Denis Casey (56) took part in a scheme that was “deceitful, dishonest and corrupt”.

He said they had failed to act with honesty and integrity by manufacturing €7.2bn in deposits in what were obviously “sham transactions”.

The deals were done in September 2008 in order to make Anglo’s books look healthier than they actually were.

Serious matter

Judge Nolan said that it was a serious matter than two blue chip companies conspired together to manipulate public accounts.

He said that individual depositors and investors relied on and made decisions based on the public accounts of companies.

He said that if the public cannot rely on probity of blue chip companies and banks we lose all trust in them. He said that money was important to people, especially to older people who have nest eggs invested in banks.

“They are entitled to rely on honesty and integrity. In this case honesty and integrity were sorely lacking,” Judge Nolan said.

He said this conspiracy potentially affected thousands of people and that the starting point for his sentence was eight years.

The judge said that certain State authorities turned a blind eye to “optically driven balance sheet management” which he said was a euphemism for banks entering into transactions which have little or no effect.

Evidence

The evidence during the trial was that Bowe believed the attitude of Financial Regulator was one of “I’m not looking” and that Casey became involved with the transactions after being told by the regulator that Irish banks needed to “don the green jersey” and help each other out during the unprecedented global credit crunch.

Judge Nolan said that Anglo’s former CEO, David Drumm, was the driving force behind the scheme. He also said that it beggared belief that Anglo’s auditors Ernst&Young (now EY) had signed off on Anglo’s end of year accounts.

“They should have known what was occurring if they were doing their job properly,” he said, and commented as to whether it was a case of “blindness or wilful blindness”.

Not guilty pleas

Bowe from Glasnevin, Dublin, McAteer of Greenrath, Tipperary Town, Co Tipperary and Casey from Raheny, Dublin had all pleaded not guilty to conspiring together and with others to defraud by setting up a €7.2 billion circular transaction scheme between March 1st and September 30th, 2008 to bolster Anglo’s balance sheet with the intention of misleading investors.

On day 89 of the longest running criminal trial in the State’s history a jury convicted Casey. They had already returned guilty verdicts on Bowe and McAteer a week earlier. The jury deliberated for a total of 65 hours.

Jailing McAteer for three and a half years, Judge Nolan said he had authorised the transactions when he knew what he was doing was underhand, deceitful and corrupt. He said he was a respected leader of huge experience whose actions in 2008 were reprehensible.

He told Bowe that his was the chief man in Anglo’s Treasury room and he had failed to act with honesty. He told him that in law following orders was no defence.

He imposed a two year sentence on Bowe, telling him the lower sentence was because he was “a lesser functionary” and not a board member.

He told Casey that he had made a grave error of judgement in authorising the transaction with Anglo. He said he was a man who should have known better. He jailed him for two years and nine months after telling him that Anglo were the authors of the scheme but that he had behaved disgracefully and reprehensibly in co-operating with it.

Casey told gardaí that he only agreed to the short term loans with Anglo on condition that there was no risk to his company and that he did not know or intend that Anglo would misrepresent the loans as customer deposits.

McAteer is the only one of the three to have a previous conviction. He was convicted in 2014 of providing unlawful loans from Anglo Irish Bank to ten property developers, dubbed the ‘Maple Ten’, in July 2008 in breach of Section 60 of the Companies Act.

He carried out 240 hours of community service in lieu of a two-year prison sentence.

The court also heard that McAteer had a large shareholding in Anglo that was once very valuable and had lost “tens of millions” of euro when the shares collapsed in value.

Judge Nolan said that none of the men had gained from the scheme and that there was no loss to the State or the banks as the inter-bank loans cancelled each other out.

Originally published 6.04am

Read: Former CEO of Irish Life and Permanent convicted of €7.2 billion conspiracy to defraud

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Anglo trial: Three ex-bankers jailed over €7bn fraud

Ruadhán Mac Cormaic

 

Irish Times: Friday, July 29, 2016, 12:29

Three former bankers have been handed prison sentences for their roles in a €7 billion fraud.

Former Anglo Irish Bank executive Willie McAteer has been sentenced to three and a half years in jail while his Anglo colleague John Bowe was given a two year term.

Denis Casey, the former group chief executive of Irish Life and Permanent, has been jailed for two years and nine months.

The three men did not react when the sentences were handed down. They conferred briefly with their lawyers before being led out of court through a side-door.

McAteer briefly glanced at judge Martin Nolan when he confirmed all three men would receive prison sentences, but otherwise the three former bankers stared at the floor throughout the hearing.

The judge said he imposed a two year sentence on Bowe, telling him the lower sentence was because he was “a lesser functionary” and not a board member.

The three men have 28 days to lodge a notice of intention to appeal the sentences.

Last June, a jury at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court convicted Bowe (52) and McAteer (65), and the former Group Chief Executive of Irish Life and Permanent plc (ILP), Casey (56) of conspiring to make Anglo’s books look €7.2 billion healthier than they actually were.

The three men were involved in setting up a circular scheme of billion euro transactions where Anglo moved money to ILP and ILP sent the money back, via their assurance firm Irish Life Assurance, to Anglo.

The scheme was designed so that the deposits came from the assurance company and would be treated as customer deposits, which are considered a better measure of a bank’s strength than inter-bank loans.

‘Dishonest, deceitful and corrupt’

Handing down the sentences after the longest running criminal trial in Irish history, judge Martin Nolan said the transactions at the heart of the case were “dishonest, deceitful and corrupt”, adding: “There is no other way of describing it.”

He said they were “sham transactions”.

“All they did was to create the impression that Anglo Irish Bank had€7.2 billion more in corporate deposits than it had.”

People were entitled to rely on the public accounts published by companies, the judge said.

While he was “very much aware of the involvement and non-involvement of State authorities” and of the broader background to the case, the judge said he regarded the offences as “very, very serious.”

“The public is entitled to rely on the probity of blue-chip companies and blue-chip banks… If we cannot rely on blue-chip banks, we lose trust in institutions.”

Members of the public were entitled to expect “integrity and honesty” from big firms. “Honesty and integrity was sorely lacking in these transactions,” he added.

Judge Nolan described McAteer as a man of “huge experience” who was a board member of Anglo and close to the leadership of the institution.

His actions in relation to the transactions at the centre of the case were “grossly reprehensible” and “a huge error of judgment”.

‘Saving the bank isn’t everything’

“I can appreciate the desperation of the moment. I can appreciate that everyone at Anglo wanted to save the bank. But saving the bank isn’t everything.”

Judge Nolan said Bowe was the “de facto treasurer” of the Anglo at the relevant time. “He was the chief man in the treasury room,” the judge said.

“He should have known what he was doing.”

In law, the judge said, following orders was not a defence. “If Mr Bowe had told them not to do it, he would have fulfilled his function.” He did not do that, the judge added.

The judge described Casey’s decision to involve himself “to help a fellow Irish institution” as “a grave error of judgment”, adding: “He was a man who should have known better.”

In his remarks, which took just over 20 minutes to deliver before a packed but silent courtroom number nine, Judge Nolan also said it “beggared belief” that the accounting firm Ernst and Young had signed off on Anglo’s interim accounts.

“They should have known what was happening if they did their job properly,” he said. “It seems incomprehensible how these accounts were signed.”

He said he did not know if it was blindness or wilful blindness.

Judge Nolan said the transactions carried out by the three former bankers did not cause the collapse of the Irish banking industry. Nor did the banks lose money as a result of the transactions.

“But what they did nonetheless was extremely wrong.”

In view of the seriousness of the crimes, the judge said, he had to impose prison sentences on all three men.

He said he did this while taking into account all that they and their families had suffered, and the adverse effect their convictions would have on their records and their futures.

He said he had taken into account that the three men did not profit from the transactions. “All three men acted in what they thought would be in the interests of their companies,” he said.

He also took into account their backgrounds, what they had achieved in life and what they had done for their communities. They were “good, honourable men who contributed to their families, their communities and their companies,” he said.

The judge acknowledged the three men had lost their jobs and had been subjected to “public odium and ridicule”, while their lengthy trial had been “a very stressful experience”.

On the background to the case, the judge recalled 2008 was “a chaotic year in the financial world”, that there was “dysfunction” in financial markets and that people in the industry were under stress.

“These crimes came out of that background,” he said.

The judge said his “starting point” in sentencing in the case was eight years.

Longest running criminal trial

Bowe from Glasnevin, Dublin, McAteer of Greenrath, Tipperary Town, Co Tipperary and Casey from Raheny, Dublin had all pleaded not guilty.

On day 89 of the longest running criminal trial in the State’s history a jury convicted Casey. They had already returned guilty verdicts on Bowe and McAteer a week earlier. The jury deliberated for a total of 65 hours.

Sentencing McAteer to three and a half years, Judge Nolan said he had authorised the transactions when he knew what he was doing was underhand, deceitful and corrupt. He said he was a respected leader of huge experience whose actions in 2008 were reprehensible.

He told Bowe that his was the chief man in Anglo’s Treasury room and he had failed to act with honesty. He told him that in law following orders was no defence. He imposed a two year sentence on Bowe, telling him the lower sentence was because he was “a lesser functionary” and not a board member.

He told Casey that he had made a grave error of judgement in authorising the transaction with Anglo. He said he was a man who should have known better. He jailed him for two years and nine months after telling him that Anglo were the authors of the scheme but that he had behaved disgracefully and reprehensibly in co-operating with it. Casey told gardaí that he only agreed to the short term loans with Anglo on condition that there was no risk to his company and that he did not know or intend that Anglo would misrepresent the loans as customer deposits.

Previous conviction

McAteer is the only one of the three to have a previous conviction. He was convicted in 2014 of providing unlawful loans from Anglo Irish Bank to 10 property developers, dubbed the “Maple Ten”, in July 2008 in breach of Section 60 of the Companies Act. He carried out 240 hours of community service in lieu of a two year prison sentence.

The court also heard that McAteer had a large shareholding in Anglo that was once very valuable and had lost “tens of millions” of euro when the shares collapsed in value.

Judge Nolan said that none of the men had gained from the scheme and that there was no loss to the State or the banks as the inter-bank loans cancelled each other out.

© 2018 irishtimes.com

 

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State had intimate knowledge that the two banks were helping each other out

 

SB POST   By Tom LyonsJun 19, 2016

Official files and secret notes reveal that a €7 billion fraud that led to the criminal conviction of three bankers earlier this month was “potentially based on encouragement” from the Central Bank, The Sunday Business Post can reveal.

The secret documents reveal how the state had intimate knowledge that the two banks were helping each other out during the financial crisis in order to make their balance sheets appear stronger to investors and the stock market.

The day before Anglo Irish Bank was nationalised in January 2009, Con Horan, the regulator’s then prudential director, told a high-powered meeting that his banking watchdog had an “awareness” that the bank was “working together” with Irish Life & Permanent, using what was called “back-to-back loans”.

He then told senior Department of Finance, NTMA and Central Bank officials that this working relationship was “potentially based on encouragement from Dame Street”.

Horan said he was meeting the bank’s auditors to discuss the arrangement. He also explained how the circular transaction worked in January 2009 in order to use money from IL&P to boost Anglo’s customer deposits.

Horan was asked by Mary O’Dea, another senior official in the Central Bank, whether or not the €7 billion deal would have to be disclosed in Anglo’s accounts.

Horan said: “Auditors are comfortable… Current accounts will have lot more disclosures.”

On February 25, 2009 documents marked “secret” by the Financial Regulator also saw the state’s banking watchdog admit internally that Anglo and IL&P bankers might be able to argue that the €7 billion fraud was only carried out because of “encouragement”.

In a document prepared for its board, the regulator admitted: “There is also information available that might be argued to support a defence against accusations of market abuse, specifically in relation to knowledge within the Financial Regulator/Central Bank, but also more generally in relation to the role of the Department of Finance, Central Bank and Financial Regulator encouraging institutions to co-operate with each other in extremely difficult circumstances where the very existence of the Irish financial system was in some doubt.”

There is also evidence in notes kept of meetings of the Domestic Standing Group – made up of the Department of Finance, the Central Bank and the Financial Regulator – that the state was monitoring how Anglo and IL&P were working together in the months before the €7 billion fraud.

On June 10, 2008 a note of a DSG meeting involving Patrick Neary, the financial regulator, Horan, Kevin Cardiff, then assistant secretary of the Department of Finance, and Brian Halpin of the Central Bank shows that the state discussed Irish Life & Permanent’s balance sheet in detail just prior to its half-year results to the stock market.

The DSG notes say that the state knew that Anglo was putting several billion onto IL&P’s balance sheet just prior to its year-end in order to make IL&P’s financial position look stronger.

The notes say that in relation to IL&P it expected just before its reporting date in June 2008 to receive “2 billion from Anglo (maybe 3) – short-term”.

Neary states that any support “has to be commercial”.

Horan is also described as saying a senior IL&P executive had already been told to be “careful in use of language”.

The DSG then discusses replacing Gillian Bowler, a former travel agent, as chairperson of the stockmarket-listed IL&P.

“Changing chair is high risk,” the DSG noted before discussing the possibility of requesting David Went, the former chief executive of IL&P, to take on her job.

However, Paul O’Higgins (for the DPP) brought an application at an early stage in the trial to prevent any evidence about the Financial Regulator’s knowledge or otherwise of the fraud being put to the jury.

“Now, there’s no doubt about it, the regulator had a fair degree of knowledge what was going on here,” Judge Nolan concluded.

“He certainly had a fair degree of knowledge of the June transaction and I think from the conversations involving some of the employees of the regulator, they certainly had a knowledge of what had occurred in March . . . So, the regulator did know to a degree what was going on, but the regulator cannot condone criminal behaviour. It doesn’t give a defence to any party that they knew about it . . . ”

In comments to the jury, Judge Martin Nolan said that the origins of Irish Life & Permanent working with Anglo Irish Bank could be traced back to the Central Bank’s concern that IL&P was too reliant on funding from the European Central Bank and what would happen if this was disclosed to the stock market.

“Now, the ironic thing, if you want to call it that, it seems from the interview, from what everybody said, that Mr Casey was happy enough with his image before he met Mr (John) Hurley (the governor of the Central Bank) and Mr Hurley changed all of that. Mr Hurley wasn’t happy with his image.”

 

 

Sentencing of Anglo and Irish Life and Permanent Top Dog Fraudsters Adjourned until Friday

Thousands lost their life savings due to the fraud!

Wed July 27,2016

Is there a dirty deal between the Government and the Defendants To Protect the state from compensation claims?

At the sentence hearing on Monday Last, defence pointed out that there was no loss to the bank or to the state due to the fraud

There are no reports of the Prosecution on behalf of the Government pointing out that thousands of small investors were defrauded of their life savings

There were several high ranking character witnesses called in support of mitigation of sentence by the defence

But there were no victim impact statements given though these are criminal convictions

Prosecutor O’Higgins SC,for the prosecution (State),  told the judge that the maximum effective sentence was ten years according to newspaper reports

But  no  demand for the maximum sentence to be applied was reported.

The defense on behalf of the convicted bankers did not call the then regulator, the then governor of the central bank, the then secretary general of the Department of Finance

Have the defence, instructed by the bankers and the government (who instructs the prosecuting lawyers) done a deal to prevent small investors getting their money back???

Lawyers for the defendants and the Government must take instructions from their clients unless such instructions are illegal, unethical or in breach of court rules.

Hence the players in any deal are not the lawyers but the government and the convicted bankers.

Noonan’s Non Reply To Seamus Healy TD in Dáil: Will Small Shareholders be Compensated??

QUESTION NO:  115

DÁIL QUESTION addressed to the Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan)
by Deputy Seamus Healy for WRITTEN ANSWER on 23/06/2016

To ask the Minister for Finance if he will recommend that small shareholders be compensated by the State at least to the extent of the entitlement of depositors under the Bank Deposit Guarantee Scheme, given the conviction of two former executives of Anglo-Irish Bank on a charge of conspiring to defraud investors, that Government and his Department, the Office of The Regulator and the Central Bank were all aware of the relevant transaction in advance of the publication of the misleading accounts of the affairs of the bank and the other evidence and remarks of the Judge in Court (details supplied see further down); and if he will make a statement on the matter.

REPLY.

As previously outlined to the Deputy in my answer to parliamentary question number 108 on 16th June 2016, Anglo Irish Bank was nationalised on 15 January 2009 and on that date the Minister for Finance acquired all of the ordinary and preference share capital by virtue of the provisions of the Anglo Irish Bank Act 2009, therefore, as of that date, the ownership of the shares in Anglo Irish Bank would have transferred to the Minister for Finance. If the Government had not nationalised Anglo Irish Bank, the Bank had the potential to collapse and impact on the entire Irish banking system. At that time, shares were valued on the market  in the region of €0.22, however in the event of the Bank failing, Anglo Irish Bank s shares would have been worthless.

Sections 22-32 of the Anglo Irish Bank Corporation Act 2009 provide that the Minister for Finance shall appoint an Assessor at an appropriate time having regard to the public interest. The job of the Assessor is to independently determine the fair and reasonable aggregate value, if any, of the transferred shares and extinguished rights and the consequent amount of compensation, if any, that may be payable to persons in respect of Anglo Irish Bank shares transferred and rights extinguished under the Act. Since the liquidation of IBRC in February 2013, there has been no timeframe set for the appointment of an Assessor.

An update on the liquidation of IBRC can be found at http://www.finance.gov.ie/sites/default/files/Progress%20update%20report_31%20Dec%202015_0.pdf

The Deposit Guarantee Scheme (“DGS”) was established to protect depositors in the event of a bank, building society or credit union authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland being unable to repay deposits. The DGS is part of the Central Bank of Ireland s strategy to ensure that the best interests of consumers of financial services are protected. The DGS is administered by the Central Bank of Ireland and is funded by the credit institutions covered by the scheme. The DGS was not established to protect equity investors.

 

 

Detail Supplied: “In a document prepared for its board, the regulator admitted: “There is also information available that might be argued to support a defence against accusations of market abuse, specifically in relation to knowledge within the Financial Regulator/Central Bank, but also more generally in relation to the role of the Department of Finance, Central Bank and Financial Regulator encouraging institutions to co-operate with each other in extremely difficult circumstances where the very existence of the Irish financial system was in some doubt.”

There is also evidence in notes kept of meetings of the Domestic Standing Group – made up of the Department of Finance, the Central Bank and the Financial Regulator – that the state was monitoring how Anglo and IL&P were working together in the months before the €7 billion fraud.-Sunday Business Post, 19/06/2016

Full Report

http://www.businesspost.ie/damning-files-reveal-central-banks-role-in-e7bn-banking-fraud/

Business Post   19/06/2016

  Remarks of Judge in Court

“These were classic back-to-back transactions, done for public optics only,” the judge said in his February ruling. He said he believed the regulator “condoned optics-based balance sheet management” as it did not want Irish banks to “go down”. The Irish authorities were frightened by what they had seen with Northern Rock and they had seen central banks in other jurisdictions help their banking systems.

Neary and Hurley were “hands on” and entirely involved in the effort to save the Irish banking system, the judge said. They had put the green jersey into Casey’s mind, and Casey had acted on it.  Colm Keena, Irish Times, June 9,2016

Mr Peter  Fitzpatrick (Irish Life and Permanent) who was acquitted of the conspiracy to defraud investors said in a statement to gardai quoted in court:

“He said that prior to January 2009, ILP never received any request for clarification from Anglo or its auditors, the then financial regulator Patrick Neary or the then Central Bank governor John Hurley

‘Political expediency’

“I feel that the matter was dealt with as a matter of political expediency with no reference to the substance of the transaction.

“I believe that the actions of the [financial] regulator post 30 September 2008 effectively shows [sic] that he tacitly if not explicitly approved such actions. Without this understanding the transaction would have in all certainty not have taken place,” he told gardaí­.—Declan Brennan,Irish Times, , May 5, 2016, 18:07

 On one end of the line was John Bowe, Anglo’s head of capital markets. At the other was Mary Elizabeth Donoghue from the Office of the Financial Regulator.

The call occurred on October 28, 2008, weeks before publication of Anglo’s preliminary results on December 3, 2008. Critically, it also came weeks after the execution of a spectacular €7.2bn scheme of circular transactions between Anglo and Irish Life & Permanent…..

“Let’s call a spade a spade,” said Donoghue as Bowe explained the motivation behind the balance sheet window dressing exercise, insisting it had nothing to do with the liquidity crisis then engulfing banks around the globe, including our own.

The conversation included this exchange:

Bowe: “This was purely about avoiding an issue of confidence in the bank.”

Donoghue: “Yeah, so it looked like an asset manager had placed money with yourselves?”

Bowe “Exactly.”

Donoghue “It forms part of the… the customer deposit, yeah.”

Bowe: “Exactly.”

Donoghue: “Yeah. That’s fine, that’s grand, that’s what I – even my limited reading of it now that’s what I read it to be and I just wanted – let’s not get too excited about what’s happening here and let’s call it what it is. That’s fine.”      Dearbhail McDonald Legal editor, Sunday Independent, 12/06/2016

 

 

 

————————————————————————-

Sunday July 24

Has a Dirty Deal Been Hatched Between Defene and Prosecution (the Government) to Protect the Elites?

Will the then regulator, the then head of the central bank, the then secretary of the Department of Finance be called (by sub-poena) to give evidence as to whether they encouraged the fraudsters or simply allowed the fraud to continue? Had they full advance knowledge?

The stench is rising!

Damning files reveal Central Bank’s role in €7bn banking fraud – The Sunday Business Post

MINISTER NOONAN FAILS TO ANSWER DEMAND FOR COMPENSATION FOR SMALL SHAREHOLDERS IN ANGLO BY SEAMUS HEALY TD IN DAIL REPLY TO PARLIAMENTARY QUESTION-PENSIONERS, REDUNDANT WORKERS DEFRAUDED

Government, Department of Finance had Full Knowledge!!

<!– [if lt IE 9]> http://www.businesspost.ie/wp-content/themes/smart-mag/js/html5.js <![endif]–>

“Official files and secret notes reveal that a €7 billion fraud that led to the criminal conviction of three bankers earlier this month was “potentially based on encouragement” from the Central Bank, The Sunday Business Post can reveal.

The secret documents reveal how the state had intimate knowledge that the two banks were helping each other out during the financial crisis in order to make their balance sheets appear stronger to investors and the stock market.

The day before Anglo Irish Bank was nationalised in January 2009, Con Horan, the regulator’s then prudential director, told a high-powered meeting that his banking watchdog had an “awareness” that the bank was “working together” with Irish Life & Permanent, using what was called “back-to-back loans”.

He then told senior Department of Finance, NTMA and Central Bank officials that this working relationship was “potentially based on encouragement from Dame Street”.

Horan said he was meeting the bank’s auditors to discuss the arrangement. He also explained how the circular transaction worked in January 2009 in order to use money from IL&P to boost Anglo’s customer deposits.

Horan was asked by Mary O’Dea, another senior official in the Central Bank, whether or not the €7 billion deal would have to be disclosed in Anglo’s accounts.

Horan said: “Auditors are comfortable… Current accounts will have lot more disclosures.”

On February 25, 2009 documents marked “secret” by the Financial Regulator also saw the state’s banking watchdog admit internally that Anglo and IL&P bankers might be able to argue that the €7 billion fraud was only carried out because of “encouragement”–

“In a document prepared for its board, the regulator admitted: “There is also information available that might be argued to support a defence against accusations of market abuse, specifically in relation to knowledge within the Financial Regulator/Central Bank, but also more generally in relation to the role of the Department of Finance, Central Bank and Financial Regulator encouraging institutions to co-operate with each other in extremely difficult circumstances where the very existence of the Irish financial system was in some doubt.”

There is also evidence in notes kept of meetings of the Domestic Standing Group – made up of the Department of Finance, the Central Bank and the Financial Regulator – that the state was monitoring how Anglo and IL&P were working together in the months before the €7 billion fraud…. SB POST

Full Article:

http://www.businesspost.ie/damning-files-reveal-central-banks-role-in-e7bn-banking-fraud/

Business Post   19/06/2016

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