Denis O'Brien and the Irish Tax Payer

Bobert

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In a serious of interviews with Sunday Papers, Denis O’Brien revealed that the Moriarty Tribunal has ruled against him in sixty areas. Since the inception of the Tribunal O’Brien has tried and tried again to portray it as having an agenda against him, often seeking injunctions against it and even once bringing it to the attention of the European Court of Human Rights. In these interviews he switched his spin machine into overdrive, suggesting that the results would greatly hamper Ireland’s reputation and declaring himself a champion of civil servants. There is a strange irony here that Denis O’Brien should also be worrying about the tax payers in that, just before he sold Esat, he fled to Portugal as a tax exile and avoided paying tax on the sale.

O’Brien holds the belief that the State has wasted vast sums of money on the tribunal, even going so far as to buy anonymous ads in newspapers concerning the expenses of some tribunal lawyers. To date the Moriarty Tribunal has cost just over €200 million, it’s findings will leave the State vulnerable to possibly paying between €3-400 million to two loosing bidders, Persona and Cellstar. O’Brien has argued, and will undoubtedly continue to argue that the state cannot afford these. Those who agree with O’Brien are overlooking one very important factor here however.

Since the original granting of the license in 1995, vast sums of money have traded hands between all parties involved in Esat, TELNOR, BT, and Teléfonica. In 1999 the TELENOR and Esat boards began to disagree over the running of Esat Digifone as it had become known. With each board attempting to buy out the other’s stake and neither being successful. In 1999, BT, backed by the Esat board took over the company in a friendly takeover for a sum of £2.2 billion. With £1 billion going to Telenor, and the rest being divided between Desmond and O’Brien and others. Neither TELNOR nor BT can claim ignorance here to say they were unaware of what they were getting into as the rumours of the questionable awards process were well under way. BT also placed a health warning in the spinoff prospectus of mmo2 saying there was potential liability concerning the award issue. The company later became o2 Ireland after the spin off of mmo2. In October 2005, the Spanish mobile communication company Telefónica bid (successfully) for o2 Ireland. They may or may not have been warned of the issues concerning the license process. If they were it is entirely possible they took out a mitigation measure.

It is now entirely possible that the Irish state was subverted by business interests and if so it is not innocent. The cost of the tribunal and the payouts it will have to make are only a fraction of how it stands to gain. After the ruling of the tribunal a file will be sent to the DPP and CAB. Immediately the government can pursue the £2.2 billion and all of it’s subsequent investments as well as possibly reopening of the license bidding process which should allow it to be sold for more then the Esat consortium originally paid. If this were to happen it would be the single greatest CAB seizure in their history and a major windfall for the Irish exchequer who are currently scrambling to find money anywhere they can. The upside for the Irish taxpayer could amount to offset several months of borrowings for the state.
 


mmrebel

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Id imagine your post should be in the justice forum , i say that not nit picking but because thats exactly what is needed here for the international business community to start taking Ireland seriously again , mind you according to my M.D they never really have.
 

toughbutfair

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I was saying just a few days ago that if CAB takes drug dealers assets and Denis O'Brien got his license illegally, then the Revenue should cease all his assets.
 

stanley

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The alleged bias of the civil servants to an Irish buyer is presently being rolled out as common practise, when someone goes to take money off any of the successful bidders DOB and DD will roll up the sleeves and get well stuck in.

There has been a lot of dough sloshing around on this bid and there is a long, long way to go after the Report is published, still feel Lowry will be the sarcrificial lamb again expect he will resign soon and head for Portugal.
 

revereie

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Portugal brought in legislation similar to our CGT around 2000. They won't be heading there this time around.
 

Bobert

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He's now based in Malta or Barbados, not sure which.
 

Disabled student

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He's now based in Malta or Barbados, not sure which.
Malta for reason of tax avoidance or possible tax evasion.

Tax is punitive for him if he moves back home here.

He is not the only one. Recall Michael Smurfit, T O Reilly et al.
 

joel

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Malta for reason of tax avoidance or possible tax evasion.

Tax is punitive for him if he moves back home here.

He is not the only one. Recall Michael Smurfit, T O Reilly et al.

Punitive? They'd still have a rellative fortune - they just don't want to pay their share. The lack of patriotism of the Irish rich is shameful.
 

Bobert

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Id imagine your post should be in the justice forum , i say that not nit picking but because thats exactly what is needed here for the international business community to start taking Ireland seriously again , mind you according to my M.D they never really have.

MD?
 

MsAnneThrope

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I think he means his boss at work (Managing Director). In your original post Bobert you said:

Immediately the government can pursue the £2.2 billion and all of it’s subsequent investments as well as possibly reopening of the license bidding process which should allow it to be sold for more then the Esat consortium originally paid
Can you realistically see this happening? Would it not open up lots of cans of worms resulting in unprecedented, bitter legal disputes/challenges lasting for years and years?
 

Bobert

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Yes I can because right now the Government could do with that money. And because it's a criminal matter it'd be pursued differently then were it a case of "can we have our money back please?"
 

wombat

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The only ones who will make money out of this are our friends in the 4 courts. Presumably, there is a record of how much the unsuccessful bidders offered for the licence. Now, if you bid 100 million for Newcastle Football club and I offer 80 million but give Alan Shearer a share and as a result, my bid is successful, you have reason for complaint. Supposing Shearer turns out to be the greatest manager in history and in 5 years, the club is worth 1,000 million, would you have grounds to claim compensation because your original bid should have been successful and if so, should your claim be for the 100 million you offered or the 1000 million the club subsequently became worth?
 

Bobert

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Sorry but what?
 
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The Tribunals could indeed end up paying for themselves many times over, though the same papers printing the hagiographies of O'Brien (the Business Post really is something else) will never tell you that. As to the case in point, the media blitz on Sunday indicates nothing more to me than desperation, getting the retaliation in first. It'll be interesting to watch it play out - it could be seen as either a template or else a 'Dieppe' for certain other big fish next Spring when the other Tribunal reports...
 

ShoutingIsLeadership

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What can you say about Denis O'Brien? (very little, if you're an Irish journalist - they don't even bother quoting Moriarty's findings).

Banks write off over
The title of that link is, 'Banks write off over €300m in three deals with Denis O’Brien'

In another universe, people are missing out on meals, so that they can pay off every penny, plus interest of what they borrowed to put a roof over their head.
 

bring back paper tigers

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What can you say about Denis O'Brien? (very little, if you're an Irish journalist - they don't even bother quoting Moriarty's findings).

Banks write off over
FG bots will be out in a minute to tell us that it's all above board and we should be greatful to have Denis around to support the Irish economy.:mad:
 

The OD

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The title of that link is, 'Banks write off over €300m in three deals with Denis O’Brien'

In another universe, people are missing out on meals, so that they can pay off every penny, plus interest of what they borrowed to put a roof over their head.
Well isn't that their own fault for not being named in a damning report regarding corruption between private individuals and government ministers.

Bunch of honest gobshytes really.

Everyone knows its the nod-nod, wink-wink types who do well. Working hard, paying taxes, being honest - that's for mugs really.
 

ShoutingIsLeadership

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Well isn't that their own fault for not being named in a damning report regarding corruption between private individuals and government ministers.

Bunch of honest gobshytes really.

Everyone knows its the nod-nod, wink-wink types who do well. Working hard, paying taxes, being honest - that's for mugs really.
It's important that we treat these big business types with proper respect, otherwise they might relocate offshore, and not pay income tax here.....
 

The OD

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It's important that we treat these big business types with proper respect, otherwise they might relocate offshore, and not pay income tax here.....
Indeed. It's also important to remember that the man in the big house should be treated with utter respect irrespective of what he does.

Make sure you're properly tugging that forelock now....
 


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