THE NATIONAL ASSET Management Agency (NAMA) has initiated High Court proceedings against a former employee over the alleged removal of data from the agency without authorisation.
In a statement this afternoon NAMA said a review undertaken by Deloitte to investigate a separate matter involving the same employee had led it to become aware that “confidential data” may have been removed from the agency by the employee.
NAMA had initiated the investigation after it became aware that the former employee, named by RTÉ last month as Enda Farrell, had bought a house from a NAMA debtor.
Farrell, a former portfolio manager with the agency, said he had been told there were no compliance issues as long as the property was his main home, which it was. NAMA said it had established that while Farrell “did not disclose the transaction”, the sale of the house had been approved under normal procedures.
During that investigation, however, NAMA said it became aware that Farrell may have taken confidential data from the agency without its prior authorisation - and last week secured a High Court order allowing his home to be searched without notice.
That order was carried out on the day it was issued, September 3, when “data from the defendants’ computers and other electronic storage devices” was recovered.
NAMA said it was now examining the data recovered, and would not be making any further statement as the matter remains active and has been transferred to the Commercial Court.
“As a criminal offence under Section 202 of the NAMA Act 2009 may have been committed, NAMA is reporting the circumstances of the removal of its confidential information to the Gardaí,” the agency said.
“A report has also been made to the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner.”
The matter could not be reported before now as the High Court had ordered that proceedings continue in camera. That order was lifted this morning.