Anglo Irish Bank executives to be sentenced today

Willie McAteer

Two former Anglo Irish Bank executives are to be sentenced for engaging in an illegal share support scheme.

The judge has already indicated that he will not be jailing former finance director Willie McAteer and the bank's former head of Irish lending, Pat Whelan.

A jury found Willie McAteer and Pat Whelan guilty of illegally loaning €450m to the so-called Maple Ten investors for the purchase of Anglo Irish Bank shares.

The prosecution argued the purpose of the deal – executed in July 2008 – was to prop-up the bank's share price, which had gone into freefall partly because Cavan billionaire Sean Quinn had unwisely decided to gamble on the stock.

Judge Martin Nolan was highly critical of the Financial Regulator's failure to raise a red flag to the loans and he believes it would be unjust to jail the former Anglo executives.

If a commissioned report finds the two men suitable for community service – then that is a route he may go down.

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