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Blow for Quinn family as legal team to withdraw representation on Monday

The family has blamed the former Anglo Irish Bank which is seeking to recoup some €2.8 billion it claims it is owed by the bankrupt former billionaire.

Sean Quinn jnr, Peter Quinn and Sean Quinn snr (L to R) outside the High Court (File photo)
Sean Quinn jnr, Peter Quinn and Sean Quinn snr (L to R) outside the High Court (File photo)
Image: Photocall Ireland/File image

THE BANKRUPT FORMER billionaire Seán Quinn and his family face a search for new legal representation as their current lawyers will apply to the High Court to stop representing them on Monday.

The law firm Eversheds will apply to the court on Monday to withdraw representation. It is expected to be consented to by the family which is seeking to avoid liability for loans totalling €2.8 billion from the former Anglo Irish Bank.

The family said in a statement that the decision to consent to the withdrawal of legal services had been forced on them by “the financial position we have been placed in as a result of Anglo’s hostile takeover of our companies, and recent court orders obtained by the bank”, BBC News reports.

The bank, now known as Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, said that it did not wish to speculate on the reasons for withdrawal of legal services but said the court made “express provision for the discharge of reasonable legal expenses in connection with the litigation being pursued and defended by the Quinn family”.

IBRC is seeking to recoup the €2.8 billion it claims it is owed by Seán Quinn and his family. The family disputes this and claim that loans totalling €2.3 billion that were given to them are invalid as they were used to prop up the bank’s share price.

Quinn, his son Seán Quinn jr and his nephew Peter Darragh Quinn have been found in contempt of court for attempting to put assets beyond the reach of the IBRC.

While Quinn jr has gone to jail, Peter Darragh Quinn was not present in the court on the day of sentencing and an arrest warrant has been issued. Quinn sr has been given more time to comply with the court orders.


In its statement issued yesterday evening, IBRC said that the claims of the Quinn family are “misleading” and said it would continue to secure compliance and recover assets on “behalf of the State and by extension the taxpayer”.

The statement said: “On 14 June 2012 the Commercial Court made orders freezing the assets of the individual members of the Quinn family on foot of grave concerns raised by IBRC on affidavit regarding the actions taken to place those assets beyond the reach of IBRC.

“Subsequently the Court took the unprecedented step of appointing a receiver over the Quinn family’s personal assets. The Quinn family did not dispute the facts set out by IBRC in support of those applications, although they had an opportunity to do so, but consented to the orders being made.

“On 29 June 2012 the High Court, on foot of findings of contempt of court made against Sean Quinn Snr, Sean Quinn Jnr and Peter Darragh Quinn, made orders requiring them to take steps to undo the scheme to place assets beyond the reach of IBRC.

“Regrettably the Quinns have not done anything substantive to comply with those orders and their claims to the contrary are misleading. IBRC will continue in its efforts to secure compliance and recover these assets for the benefit of the State and by extension the taxpayer.”

The High Court will hear an application from Eversheds to withdraw its representation of the Quinn family on Monday.

Separately, Seán Quinn jr, who is currently serving his contempt of court sentence in the training unit of Mountjoy Prison in Dublin, will appeal his conviction and sentence in the Supreme Court on 2 October.

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Hugh O'Connell

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