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High Court

Ex FAI boss John Delaney living and working abroad, court hears

The ODCE reached an agreement with Delaney over how the inspection of certain documents and emails seized from the association is to be conducted.

THE OFFICE OF the Director of Corporate Enforcement has reached an arrangement with former FAI CEO John Delaney over how the inspection of certain documents and emails seized from the association is to be conducted. 

The corporate watchdog, as part of its ongoing investigation into certain matters concerning the FAI, seized a number of documents and material from the FAI’s offices at Abbottstown on foot of a search warrant last February.

In proceedings before the High Court the ODCE seeks to inspect these documents to see if they are relevant to the investigation.

If the court finds that information contained in the documents are legally privileged then it cannot be used by the ODCE as part of its investigation.

Former FAI CEO John Delaney, who the court was told now lives and works in the UK, was joined as a notice party to proceedings, because some of the material taken may be private to him.

The matter was briefly mentioned before Justice Leonie Reynolds this afternoon.

Kerida Naidoo SC, appearing with Elva Duffy Bl for the ODCE, said that the contents of some 13 documents and a digital device with an unknown number of emails may contain information private to Delaney had been identified.

Counsel said steps had been agreed between the parties to allow Delaney, who left the FAI last September, to inspect and identify any material on the device or in the documents which he says is private. 

Delaney would be allowed to inspect a forensic copy of the digital device, counsel said.

Counsel said in order to protect the rights that any matter Delaney deems private, which the ODCE considers relevant to its investigation will be considered by just one member of the watchdog’s investigation team.

Counsel said it had also been agreed that the ODCE’s application for the High Court determine if any of seized documents and material are legally privileged can be heard in July.

Jack Tchrakian BL for Delaney said his client, who is currently living and working in the UK, was consenting to the making of orders allowing the proposed method of examining the documents and the emails to take place.  

Brian Gageby Bl for the FAI said his client was also consenting to the orders.

After making the orders Justice Leonie expressed her wish to see matters move forward with some expedition, and without any further delays.

The judge made her comments after being informed by Delaney’s counsel that he is prepared to travel to Ireland for the inspection, there were concerns that those plans might be impacted on by possible covid19 travel restrictions.

In adjourning the proceedings the judge said it was important the inspection is carried out in the presence of Delaney in the next two weeks.

This would allow the ODCE’s application to proceed on schedule in July, the judge added.

Comments are closed as legal proceedings are ongoing.

Aodhan O Faolain