Northern Ireland

Quinns back in Dublin High Court

Sean Quinn
Image caption Sean Quinn was once Ireland's richest man

The cases of Sean Quinn Sr, his son Sean Quinn Jr, and nephew Peter Darragh Quinn, will be back before the High Court in Dublin later.

On Wednesday, Sean Quinn Jr lost a Supreme Court appeal against a three-month sentence for contempt of court.

At the High Court at the end of July, Miss Justice Elizabeth Dunne found the three Quinns had defied court orders by asset stripping.

She said their evidence had been "evasive, incredible and untruthful".

They were found to have put some of their international property empire, valued at around half a billion euros, beyond the reach of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation - the former Anglo-Irish Bank.

Judge Dunne said she had come to the conclusion they would say or do anything to hold onto their properties, mainly in Russia, Ukraine and India, and their rental incomes.

Peter Darragh Quinn did not show up at the July hearing and has avoided jail by remaining in Northern Ireland.

Sean Quinn Jr, who is behind bars, may be released.

His father, now bankrupt, but once described as Ireland's richest man and who was not jailed in July, could be imprisoned if he shows up; his family say he will.

He was spared jail in order to co-operate with the tax-payers' owned bank in recovering assets. But the IBRC has given no indication that he has done so.

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court rejected Sean Quinn Jr's appeal both against the finding of contempt against him and the initial three-month sentence he is serving.

Judge Dunne jailed him indefinitely with the sentence to be reviewed after three months.

However, the Supreme Court on Wednesday also found that he should not have been jailed indefinitely.

There will be a lot of interest on Friday to see whether the IBRC seeks and gets new court orders to keep Sean Quinn Jr in prison and whether it seeks to jail his father also.

The freedom of father and son could well depend on what the IBRC decides to do at Friday's hearing.

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