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Paul Appleby pictured in 2008. Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

Corporate enforcement chief heading Anglo investigation to retire

The Director of Corporate Enforcement, Paul Appleby, has said he intends to retire next month.

THE DIRECTOR OF Corporate Enforcement who has been investigating the now defunct Anglo Irish Bank is to retire at the end of February, it has been announced.

Paul Appleby will step down next month but has insisted his decision will not impede the office’s work in its investigation into Anglo Irish Bank and said that he will make himself available to that investigation if required.

Appleby has been in the role since the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (ODCE) was set up over ten years ago. Its investigation into Anglo Irish Bank saw two substantive files sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions last year.

Last Thursday, the ODCE informed the High Court that in relation to the Anglo investigation, it had completed “two investigative strands” with “only minor work being outstanding in a third area” of its investigation. The court also heard that the DPP may soon decide to bring charges in the case.

The court has expressed frustration on a number of occasions with the length of time the investigation has been taking with it now running into its fourth year.

The High Court granted a number of extensions last year and is expected to hear more evidence from the ODCE later this month.

“While there can be no perfect time to retire from a demanding role like that of Director of Corporate Enforcement, I am satisfied that my leaving the post at this time need have no adverse consequences for the valuable work of the Office,” Appleby said in a statement this morning.

Enterprise Minister Richard Bruton will now appoint an Acting Director to takeover the role.

In a statement, Bruton paid tribute to Appleby for his “major contribution over a long number of years to the work of the Department and, in particular, in his role as Director of Corporate Enforcement.”

“We discussed the implications of his decision for the investigations underway by his Office, and, in particular, the impact on the Anglo Irish Bank investigation,” Bruton said. “The Director assured me that his resignation would not impede its successful conclusion.”

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