Saturday, 31 December 2020

Fakes, frauds and scams - business as usual in 2012

The scam artists from among the Rathkeale travellers won’t be looking back fondly at 2011. It was a year when Rathkeale made global headlines first thanks to the series of rhino horn thefts across Europe and then the eviction at Dale Farm. TV crews arrived in the County Limerick village to find out all about the Rathkealers and their way of doing business.
It was also the year that Irish law was exposed as being inadequate when it comes to dealing with white-collar crime. Fugitive solicitor Michael Lynn is reported now to be in Brazil while the investigations into Anglo Irish Bank slowly grind on. At the other end of the scale rogue builder Patrick Dunne is still in business despite a decade of rip-offs.
On the upside victims of Swank Franky de Dietrich learned that they may get some of their cash back after the Criminal Assets Bureau held onto the proceeds of frozen bank accounts.
Two of Ireland’s prolific lifestyle fraudsters Frankie Shanley and Terry Kirby are in jail, while the government are closing in on more and more people who indulge in welfare fraud.
The 419 emails still keep coming while the cold-callers from the boiler room scams haven’t let up. As 2012 gets going remember that as far as the scam artists are concerned it’s business as usual.

Tuesday, 27 December 2020

Breifne O'Brien- Ireland's Celtic Tiger parable

Breifne O'Brien, in his own way, is the ultimate parable of the Celtic Tiger. Flash, confident, plenty of style but just short any real substance to back it all up. The businessman and investor was Ireland's Bernie Madoff style con-artist, albeit on a very much smaller scale. The fact that he used the money of his friends and social circles made things all the worse. Last week Maeve Sheehan wrote a great piece in the Sunday Indo about him, read it here.

Thursday, 22 December 2020

A little Christmas cheer for the victims of Swanky Franky's ponzi scheme

There was some good news in the High Court yesterday for investors who fell for Francois de Dietrich's dodgy investment scheme. The judge ordered that €4.65 million frozen in 11 bank accounts could be seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act. The liquidator of Swanky Franky's company Etic Solutions, can now look at paying back some of the cash to 400 or so investors. Read more here.