Anglo trial sentencing under way

Willie McAteer.

A legal advisor to the former Anglo Irish Bank is giving evidence at a sentencing hearing of two of the bank's former executives.

Former Anglo Finance Director Willie McAteer and former head of Irish lending Pat Whelan were convicted by a jury of issuing illegal loans to the so-called Maple Ten investors for the purchase of the bank's shares in July 2008.

A major issue at today's sentencing hearing is whether the two former bankers believed the illegal Maple transaction was in fact above board.

Pat Whelan.

Lawyers for Pat Whelan and Willie McAteer argue that their clients understood Anglo Irish Bank's compliance department had received positive legal advice ahead of the Maple lending, that the deal would not be in breach of company law.

But the prosecution has called Robert Heron, a former partner at the law firm Matheson Ormsby Prentice as a witness.

He will say he gave legal advice, but never knew the bank would be lending to its customers for the purchase of Anglo shares.

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