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Tuesday 25 September 2018

Sinead's former manager sues singer for €500k in contract row

Sinead O’Connor denies claims she defamed ex-manager. Photo: Tony Gavin
Sinead O’Connor denies claims she defamed ex-manager. Photo: Tony Gavin

Sinead O'Connor is being sued by her former manager and his company for alleged breach of contract and defamation.

The action is brought by both Fachtna O'Ceallaigh and TAL Management Ltd, which, it is claimed, provided managerial services to the singer for several years for an agreed monthly fee plus commission and expenses.

In 2011, he claims the company was substituted for him under a new agreement.

He claims that Ms ­O'Connor terminated the agreement ­without warning in April 2012.

Defamed

Mr O'Ceallaigh is seeking upwards of €500,000 damages for breach of contract, as well as a declaration that the agreement was not validly terminated.

Mr O'Ceallaigh, of Lansdowne Park, Ballsbridge, ­Dublin, also claims he was defamed by the singer in an open letter published on her website and on a fans website in 2012.

Ms O'Connor denies the claims. She denies she ever had any agreement with TAL or Mr O'Ceallaigh or that either is entitled to damages. She also denies his claims that she defamed him.

A pre-trial issue in the ­proceedings came before the Master of the High Court, ­Edmond Honohan, yesterday.

Mark Curran BL, for Mr ­O'Ceallaigh and TAL, asked the Master for orders striking out Ms O'Connor's defences.

This was on the grounds that she had failed to comply with orders made for the discovery of documents relevant to the case.

Mr Curran said his client, aged in his seventies, was not a wealthy man.

Eoin O Shea BL, for Ms O'Connor, said she had "rock solid" defences to the claims.

It was accepted that the order for discovery had not been complied with, but she was taking steps to do so, including getting files that had been with her previous solicitor.

There were further difficulties caused by the singer's ill heath, counsel said. Not all the delay was due to his client.

The Master granted Ms O'Connor and her legal team an extra three months to comply with the discovery order.

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