Belfast Telegraph

Quinn in battle to free family

Bankrupt ex-billionaire Sean Quinn is facing the battle of his life to free his son who has been jailed over an asset stripping plot.

Sean junior and his cousin Peter Darragh Quinn, who has a warrant out for his arrest after failing to turn up at the High Court in Dublin for the hearing, were sentenced to three months in prison for trying to hide a 500 million euro property empire from the former Anglo Irish Bank.

Quinn senior, once Ireland's richest man, was also found guilty of the offence by the High Court in Dublin three weeks ago but the 65-year-old was spared punishment for now to give him time to comply with court orders and unravel the moves that carved up the family's international property empire.

He clutched a handkerchief and bowed his head as the High Court in Dublin ordered his son be locked up.

The arrest of his nephew, the son of Peter Quinn, a former president of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA), was ordered after he failed to turn up for the hearing, leaving a message that he was sick.

Quinn senior refused to comment on the jail terms as he left the Four Courts in Dublin and only told reporters: "Have a good weekend."

The one-time industry, insurance and property tycoon's doomed gambles on Anglo have lumbered the family with a 2.8 billion euro debt and a jailed son.

Judge Elizabeth Dunne told the men their contempt of court had been outrageous and that she was unhappy with their lack of cooperation.

She refused to accept they had no control over assets, when eight members of the family received 2.8 million euro in pay and income from their firms since Aril 2011. And she hit out at the movement of 1m euro to lawyers in Russia.

The bust business tycoon owes Anglo, rebranded as the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC), 2.8 billion euro after running up unprecedented losses through secret stock investments in the bank as its share price collapsed. The Quinns admit that they owe 455 million euro but have refused claims on the rest.

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