Commenting on today’s conviction of the former Anglo-Irish Bank chief executive David Drumm on fraud charges, Social Democrats co-leader Catherine Murphy TD has said lessons must be learned for future white-collar crime prosecutions.

Deputy Murphy said:

“Ten years on from the 2008 banking collapse that cost the country its economic sovereignty, the fact that a former senior banker has today been held criminally accountable must be welcomed.

“However, the outcome of this trial will provide little comfort to the thousands or people who have suffered due to the austerity measures imposed following the €63bn bank bail-out.

“This has been one of the longest-running criminal trials in the history of the State, and it follows the collapse of the prosecution of Anglo’s former chairman, Seán FitzPatrick due to a biased and flawed investigation by the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement.

“Day in and day out we see people being sent to jail for relatively minor offences. Yet when it comes to the banking system and white-collar crimes we see lengthy trials and mishandled prosecutions. People are right to ask themselves is there one law for the rich and powerful and another for the poor.

Deputy Murphy added:

“Real lessons need to be learned from this entire saga. New laws on their own are not enough to restore trust in our criminal justice and banking system, without the drive and resources to vigorously and proactively police them. The Social Democrats have proposed an Independent Anti-Corruption Agency to do just that. Without a dedicated law enforcement agency, we will continue to see fine laws on our statute books which meet international standards but which lead to few actual consequences for corrupt behaviour.”

ENDS

6 June 2018