Donie Cassidy was paid 20% of the net profits from the company that operated seven bars in Dublin airport for the past 10 years, despite a senior figure in the business being “not aware” of the nature of the services provided by the Fianna Fail senator and businessman.
Cassidy’s family company, Wentridge Investments, acquired a 10% stake in Atwell, the company operating the airport bars, for a “nominal sum” in 1998.
The other 90% of Atwell was held by Thomas Read, a pub business then owned by Hugh O’Regan. Cassidy received more than €200,000 in payments from Atwell in the 12 months to May 2008.
The lucrative deal, agreed more than a decade ago, stated that Cassidy was not required to provide capital or financial support to the company.
In addition, the Seanad leader was indemnified against “any and all liabilities” by Thomas Read. Documents drawn up at the formation of the company state that Cassidy’s annual payments were to be “in recognition of his services” to Atwell.
Mark Leavey, a former chief executive of Thomas Read, has stated in an affidavit that he was “not aware” of any services Cassidy provided to Atwell in return for these payments.
Cassidy declined to outline to The Sunday Times the nature of services provided.
“We are a family business and our business affairs are private and confidential,” Cassidy said in a statement.
“We are fully compliant as a family business with any and every request by the Dublin Airport Authority,” he added.
The terms of Cassidy’s agreement with O’Regan have not been disclosed previously.
Aer Rianta, which managed Dublin airport until the creation of the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) in 2004, awarded Atwell the contract to operate the bars on May 21, 1999 following a tender.
Thomas Read was sold in 2004 but the arrangement with Atwell stayed in place.
Seanad leader paid €200,000 in airport deal - Times Online
Why oh why ????