herald

Thursday 14 December 2017

Drumm's latest ruse to avoid his debt is thwarted

FORMER Anglo chief executive David Drumm's wife has been prevented from transferring the couple's home back into his name.

Lorraine Drumm had applied to transfer the property in Abington, Malahide back into dual ownership. But bailed-out bank Anglo told the High Court that it feared this would put the Malahide mansion "beyond reach" of creditors.

Separately, Tanaiste Mary Coughlan has hinted that gardai could seek to have Mr Drumm brought back to Ireland.

The Education Minister has said that it's "appropriate" to point out that agreements are in place between Ireland the US if the gardai "believe that someone has to be returned".

Lawyers for Anglo were taken by surprise last week when Mr Drumm, who owes the bank €8.5m, filed a voluntary bankruptcy petition in the US.

Under US bankruptcy laws, an asset acquired by a person after they have filed for bankruptcy can not be brought back into the proceedings.

But Mrs Drumm's solicitors denied the claim and said that the re-transfer was an attempt to settle Anglo's court case against the couple.

Anglo disputes that the Malahide house is a family home because the Drumms have been living in Cape Cod in the US for more than a year.

In May 2009, Mr Drumm transferred his half share of Abington into his wife's name, leaving her the sole owner.



injunction

Mr Justice Peter Kelly said he was satisfied to grant an interim injunction restraining the proposed re-transfer and returned that matter to next Tuesday.

Yesterday, Ms Coughlan appeared to echo Brian Cowen who has already said he would "hope" that Mr Drumm (44) would return to Ireland to answer questions.

An investigation into how taxpayers ended up stuck with a €34bn bailout for Anglo has been ongoing for nearly two years but Mr Drumm has never been formally quizzed.

Ms Coughlan said: "The situation with Anglo-Irish is the gardai and the Director of Corporate Enforcement are involved in a very intensive investigation in anticipation of matters going to the DPP.

"We also have agreements between ourselves and the US if the gardai believe that someone has to be returned." Mr Drumm quit Anglo in December 2008 ahead of the bank's nationalisation and subsequently moved to Cape Cod.

hnews@herald.ie

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