Garda May Be Called To Quinn Group

The Quinn Insurance saga has taken another twist with a possibility the case may be referred to the Irish police, An Garda Siochana.

There have been allegations that the company is some €100 million 'short' to cover its insurance policies.

The Financial Regulator may refer alleged breaches of insurance regulations and company law unearthed in its investigation to the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement and the Garda.

Regulatory staff have collected information detailing the failure of Quinn Insurance to meet the threshold for the amount of money an insurer must hold in reserve to cover potential claims.

Lawyers at the regulator will be consulted early next week to determine whether fresh evidence is needed to proceed with a formal complaint or to refer matters to other State bodies for further investigation or potential action.

However, owner Sean Quinn, who was listed in the Sunday Times Rich List in 2008, has claimed the company has "plenty of money".

Mr Quinn made the claim in reaction to a proposal by Anglo Irish Bank to invest €700m in the company, which would see the bank become majority stockholder in the company.

Under the plan, €150m would be injected into Quinn Insurance and €550m would be used to pay off bondholders.

Speaking on RTÉ's Prime Time programme, Mr Quinn said: "The Quinn Group has plenty of money. We don't need money, with regard to solvency and a requirement to pay claims."

He added the group was "cash rich" and had money in the bank.

According to Mr Quinn, the company had assets of up to £1bn to pay claims and another €400m surplus to cover solvency.

The Financial Regulator has been onsite in the firm since last week, overseeing its actions and working with the new management.

Since stepping in at the end of March after the High Court appointed joint provisional administrators to the firm, the regulator has caused serious concern among the 600 workers at the company who service the UK from the Enniskillen base.

The regulator said it had directed Quinn Insurance to cease writing new business in the UK to prevent the company suffering further financial losses from its "currently unprofitable UK business".

Some 1,430 employees out of a 2,800-strong workforce at Quinn Insurance are working in the Northern Ireland and GB-based insurance business at Quinn's offices in Dublin, Cavan, Enniskillen and Manchester.


Related Irish News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

02 October 2012
Seán Quinn Jnr Appeal Launched
Ireland’s Supreme Court has begun hearing an appeal launched by Seán Quinn Jnr against his three month jail term. His lawyers have told the Supreme Court his indefinite imprisonment for contempt of court and failing to reverse an asset-stripping conspiracy is "incorrect and legally wrong".
15 April 2011
Sean Quinn Forced Out Of Insurance Firm
A leading Irish entrepreneur is to loose control of the insurance business he personally founded after it ran into financial problems. Sean Quinn and his family will no longer have any role in the management of the Quinn Group following a restructure.
31 March 2010
Quinn Insurance Taken Into Receivership
A multi-million pound Irish business that began in 1973 as a small gravel pit on the Quinn family farm in the border county of Fermanagh is in trouble. There was widespread shock and concern yesterday at news that the Quinn Insurance Group has been put into administration by the High Court in Dublin.
01 November 2012
Quinns Due Back In Court
Sean Quinn and his son are due back in a Dublin court later as the inquiry continues as to whether or not the former billionaires have complied with court orders. Sean Quinn was once the richest man in Ireland, but declared himself bankrupt last year.
04 October 2012
Quinn Hard-Drive Smashed, Court Told
The Supreme Court has been told that a computer hard drive which contained crucial information pertaining to the recent charges against the Quinn Group was deliberately smashed. The hard drive was part of the operations of a Quinn Group Russian company.