Director of Corporate Enforcement must resign following Fitzpatrick acquittal
Commenting on the direction by a judge that Mr Seán Fitzpatrick should be acquitted due to the shredding of documents and coaching of witnesses, Labour spokesperson on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation has called on the Director of Corporate Enforcement to resign following the collapse of such a key trial.
Deputy Kelly said:
“I am calling on the Director of Corporate Enforcement to step down immediately from his position following the acquittal of Sean Fitzpatrick and in particular the comments of Judge Aylmer at the conclusion of the trial.
“Furthermore, the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation needs to establish an immediate independent investigation into the workings of the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement following today’s ruling.
“It is astonishing that the Director of Corporate Enforcement presided over an office where documents were shredded and it is truly shocking to learn that witnesses were coached and that the ODCE in the words of the judge “completely lost sight of the nature and extent of the evidence in relation to guilt and innocence.”
“The comments of Judge Aylmer are damning of the ODCE and given the outcome of the case it is incumbent on the Director to offer his immediate resignation.
“Separately, a fully independent investigation into the operation of the ODCE, especially but not exclusively in relation to the Fitzpatrick case, needs to be established immediately by the Minister.
“The general public, bewildered at the outcome of this case, must be given clear and immediate answers as to how such incompetence by a public body led to the acquittal of Mr. Fitzpatrick.
“The collapse of Anglo Irish and the activities that occurred in the bank have come to symbolise the devastating economic crash that the banks inflicted on Ireland.
“Ireland has an appalling record when it comes to investigating and prosecuting white collar crime.
“It is incumbent on the Minister to now carry out a review of what happened in this case, and how procedures can be improved. An independent review and investigation of the ODCE should be commenced and action taken to ensure this never happens again.”