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Businessman claims intimidation over alleged debt by operatives of Martin 'The Viper' Foley

John Kieran Brennan secured an interim injunction in the High Court.

Image: PA Images

A BUSINESSMAN HAS claimed before the High Court that a former developer is using the firm of criminal Martin ‘The Viper’ Foley to try to collect a disputed debt from him of more than €100,000

Mr John Kieran Brennan, of Clonmulen, Bunclody, Co Carlow claims that Patrick Fitzpatrick, a former developer of Dargle Lodge, Cookstown Road Enniskerry in Co Wicklow has hired a debt collection firm operated by Foley, the 68-year-old who has dozens of criminal convictions.

Mr Fitzpatrick, the court heard, has alleged that he is owed money by Mr Brennan.

Lawyers for Mr Brennan, who says he does not owe a debt to the defendant, secured a temporary injunction after several persons he claims work for Foley’s firm arrived at his home last week.

Mr Brennan says the men threatened both him and his family, demanded that he pay Mr Fitzpatrick, and said they will return later this week to the get the money.

The interim injunction prevents the defendant or any of his servants or agents from intimidating, threatening, watching or besetting Mr Brennan and his family.

The temporary injunction was granted, on an ex-parte basis, by Mr Justice Michael Twomey earlier evening. The judge made the matter returnable to later this week.

Seeking the injunction Rory Kennedy Bl for Mr Brennan said his client denies that any debt is owed to the defendant.

Counsel said that the defendant purchased 400,000 shares for €100,000 in a company called Moralltach Global Plc, of which Mr Brennan is a director.

Counsel said the defendant still retains the shares, and has not brought any court action against Mr Brennan in respect of the alleged debt.

Mr Brennan claims that he and the other directors of the firm have received threatening phone calls from the defendant over the alleged debt.

Mr Brennan said that as part of the campaign against him the defendant, which has upset and left his family in a state of distressed.

He said that the defendant has engaged the services of Martin Foley, aka the Viper, and Viper Debt Recovery and Repossession Services.

Last week a van, containing eight men, bearing the name Viper Debt Recovery & Repossession Services went to Bunclody looking for Mr Brennan, counsel said.

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The men spoke to security guards at a building in the town, which Mr Brennan uses occasionally.

The men told the guards they would be sorry if they interfered in this business, the court heard.

The gardai were called and the men travelled to Mr Brennan’s home, which is located a mile outside Bunclody.

At Mr Brennan’s home, counsel said, the men demanded payment of the monies allegedly owed to Mr Fitzpatrick, refused to leave unless they got their money, threatened Mr Brennan, and upset his family, counsel said.

Counsel said that the men said they would be back, and said they would return on Tuesday 23 June.

As a result Mr Brennan has made a statement to the gardai and instructed solicitors to seeks orders against the defendant.

Mr Brennan is particularly concerned about Mr Foley’s involvement given his long standing involvement in criminality, the court was told. 

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Aodhan O Faolain

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