Northern Ireland

Nama reports Frank Cushnahan to two police forces over alleged corruption

Frank Cushnahan Image copyright BBC Newsline
Image caption Mr Cushnahan, a former banker, was a Nama adviser from May 2010 to November 2013

Nama has reported its former NI advisor Frank Cushnahan to Irish police and the National Crime Agency (NCA) alleging possible corruption.

Mr Cushnahan, a prominent businessman, served on Nama's NI advisory committee from 2010 to 2013.

The Sunday Times has reported that Nama contacted the two police forces in the wake of a BBC NI Spotlight programme.

It broadcast a recording in which Mr Cushnahan took a £40,000 cash payment from Nama client, John Miskelly.

According to what Mr Cushnahan says on the recording, which was made in 2012, he was going to help Mr Miskelly with a refinancing deal which would get his assets out of Nama.

Mr Cushnahan also claimed he could influence a senior Nama official, Ronnie Hanna.

There is no direct evidence of wrongdoing by Mr Hanna and he firmly denies that he had any improper dealings with Mr Cushnahan.

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Media captionFrank Cushnahan was recorded accepting payment of £40,000

Mr Cushnahan has denied any wrongdoing and told the BBC he would not be providing any further responses because of the ongoing NCA investigation.

Mr Miskelly said "payments made by me to any persons have been lawful".

The Sunday Times reported that Nama's head of legal wrote to the Garda fraud unit citing section 19 of the Republic's Criminal Justice Act which obliges public bodies to inform gardaí (Irish police) when they may be able to assist in securing a prosecution.

Image caption The National Assets Management Agency (Nama) is the Republic of Ireland's "bad bank"

On Saturday, The Irish Times reported that the Republic's spending watchdog had reportedly concluded that the £1.2bn sale of Nama's Northern Ireland loan portfolio had "irregularities" and "shortcomings".

Nama sold its entire Northern Ireland portfolio to Cerberus, a US investment fund, in 2014.

The paper reported that the Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG) will say that failings in the sales process could have resulted in "hundred of millions of euro" not being realised.

The C&AG report will be published this week.

Speaking on RTÉ's The Week in Politics, the Irish government's Chief Whip, Regina Doherty, said that the report will be brought to cabinet on Wednesday and will be published later that day or on Thursday.

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