Belfast Telegraph

'We need moolah' says Anglo boss in secret tapes

Bust bank chief's pledge to threaten regulators unless he gets more cash

BY PAUL WILLIAMS

Anglo boss David Drumm's strategy was to go down to the Central Bank "with our arms swinging" to demand a cash injection for his sinking bank, secret phone call tapes have revealed.

He explained his strategy about dealing with the Central Bank to Director of Treasury John Bowe as: "Get into the f***ing simple speak: 'We need the moolah, you have it, so you're going to give it to us and when would that be?' We'll start there."

In the latest Anglo tapes, Mr Drumm is heard saying he would threaten regulators unless they wrote him a cheque.

He told Mr Bowe: "We'll be going down there with our arms swinging. I'm very clear on the proposal."

He is also heard threatening to shut Anglo Irish and "hand the keys" to the Irish state if he did not get a fresh influx of taxpayers' capital.

He added: "I'm going to keep asking the thick question: 'When, when is the cheque arriving?'"

Speaking of a potential collapse, Mr Drumm told Mr Bowe: "And by the way, the game has changed now because really the problem now is at their (regulators') door.

"Because if they don't give it (€7bn) to us on Monday they have a bank collapse. If the f***ing money keeps running out the door the way it has been running out the door."

Mr Drumm said he would ask the regulators: "How are you getting on with that loan, lads?"

And he pledged to tell officials: "If you want the f***ing keys now, I can give them to you. So I'm relaxed about it." The latest recording was made the night before a crucial meeting with the Financial Regulator in September 2008 when both Anglo executives were discussing their game plan.

In language unprintable in a family newspaper, Mr Drumm talks about his intention to tell the regulators the bank "will collapse" if it does not get emergency funding within days.

In a phonecall with Mr Bowe, Mr Drumm said he was going to talk to the state bank officials in "f***ing simple speak".

Mr Drumm is also critical of ratings agencies, who both executives were concerned would target the bank, and said they would have to fend off the agencies, confronting questions about how conditions had deteriorated and the institution was under stress.

Drumm told Bowe: "Yeah and we'll be saying, 'Yeah, a stress because HBOS were f***ing sold and Lehman's went bust and f***ing Bank of America f***ing took over Merrill's and other f***ing non-normal things happened, you c***.'"

Drumm, who has since moved to live in the US, uses particularly colourful language throughout the eight-minute phone call. When Bowe tells Drumm the bank has no more cash, the boss joked: "You're going to have the look of death, Johnny Wonder!"

He also refers to the financial regulators as "f***ing Freddie F***ing Fly".

The Irish Independent this week revealed details of the telephone conversation which took place on the day before the above Drumm-Bowe phone call – September 18 – between executives John Bowe and Peter Fitzgerald.

In it, Bowe outlined a strategy to mislead the Irish state when they asked for a €7bn loan. Bowe said Anglo's plan was intended to "pull them in" and get them to "write the big" cheque.

Bowe told Fitzgerald he had arrived at the loan sum by picking "it out of my a***", even though he knew Anglo needed much more than that.

Bowe had been involved in negotiations with the Central Bank and denies he misled the bank.

Meanwhile, Taoiseach Enda Kenny spoke with Angela Merkel yesterday – but the mounting fury in Germany over the revelations in the Anglo tapes was not discussed.

Party colleagues of the German chancellor are enraged after it emerged that Anglo executives sang the German national anthem as deposits from Germany flowed into Anglo as a result of the bank guarantee.

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