Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 September 2014

Quinn brother 'dishonours GAA role'

Peter Quinn insists his family will be cleared of any wrongdoing

A senior Fine Gael figure has accused the brother of bankrupt billionaire Sean Quinn of dishonouring the role of GAA president.

Party chairman Charlie Flanagan accused Peter Quinn of appearing to stand outside the law and use language from the gutter in a hard-hitting defence of his family.

"Politicians are not beyond criticism, but the uncouth language used by Mr Quinn does not befit a man who was president of the GAA, one of the most respected offices in Irish public life," he said.

Former GAA president Peter Quinn launched a swingeing attack on financial regulator Matthew Elderfield and Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC) chairman Alan Dukes, among others, at the latest rally in support of the family in Ballyconnell. He also attacked politicians including the Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Finance Minister Michael Noonan.

"The language used by Mr Quinn yesterday belongs in the gutter and dishonours the office of Uachtarain of the GAA, which he once held," Mr Flanagan said.

"Mr Quinn is happy to be seen in public in Northern Ireland with his son (Peter Darragh) who is currently avoiding the sentence handed down to him by a court in the Republic. Our courts are a fundamental pillar of our democracy and the law must take its course. It is highly unsatisfactory that some people feel that these standards do not apply to them."

Former billionaire Quinn, who faces the High Court on Friday to find out if he will be jailed for contempt for asset stripping, was close to tears in front of more than 5,000 people hometown supporters. His brother was one of a series of speakers who included his daughter Ciara.

Peter Quinn also used his 40-minute speech to declare that the family will be cleared of any wrongdoing in relation to 2.8 billion euro Anglo debts in "an impartial court free from political influence".

Mr Quinn and his wife Patricia were in tears as prayers and a poem were read for their jailed son, Sean Quinn Junior. The family are embroiled in a legal battle with Anglo, rebranded IBRC, over the debts and have taken a counter-case again the bank over a loans deal.

Quinn, his son and nephew Peter Darragh Quinn were found guilty of breaching court orders to stop putting up to 500 million euro worth of property assets beyond the reach of the bank. Sean Junior is appealing his imprisonment at Mountjoy's training centre, while Peter remains on the run in Northern Ireland.

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