http://www.irishtimes.com/business/cave ... -1.2662141
politics is show business for ugly people, then what is the courts system, especially as it pertains to publicity-conscious lay litigants? A clutch of newly filed lawsuits in Dublin against the central bankers of Europe, alleging the fixing of the global oil market, may give us a clue as to the answer. Is it a bit like the Eurovision?http://tipptatler.ie/2016/05/plenary-su ... d-mcgrath/
Jerry Beades, the former Fianna Fáil executive member and property developer, has turned relentless lay litigation and anger-driven advocacy into an art form through his exploits with the New Land League anti-eviction campaign and the Friends of Banking Ireland group, which campaigns against the wrongdoings of financial institutions.
Beades, an intelligent and determined but invariably bombastic character, has trained his untrained legal guns on a wide variety of targets in recent years. He has sued, and been sued by, several banks, including ACC and Ulster Bank.
He has sued the State over the appointment of Peter Kelly as president of the High Court. He has clashed with a long list of judges, making allegations about the independence of several. He has also supported numerous other lay litigants in legal actions connected to evictions and property disputes with banks.
It should be said that Beades has had a few notable successes with his legal sorties, including one claim against a bank that lost the deeds to one of his properties. But, on the whole, his record has not been flush with victories.
Most notoriously of all, Beades was on the receiving end of media criticism last year for the assistance he gave to Brian O’Donnell, of Gorse Hill fame, when Bank of Ireland came to repossess O’Donnell’s Killiney mansion as a result of his debts.
The irony here is that, unlike Beades, O’Donnell is himself a qualified solicitor. But presumably Beades was able to give him moral and practical support, if not legal advice. And he was able to help him cope with the media attention, of course.
Beades didn’t like the way he was portrayed in the Irish media over the Gorse Hill affair. In his eyes, he was ridiculed for attempting to help a man who was being thrown out of his family home. It didn’t matter to him that it was a 9,000sq ft family home or that the bank said O’Donnell owed it €60 million.
The coverage of his involvement with Gorse Hill still rankles with Beades. Then again, this is the risk you take when you put yourself, willingly, in the public eye on nationally controversial issues.
This week, Beades branched out from the property industry and filed cases against every central banker and central bank in the euro zone, in addition to the European Central Bank, the European Banking Authority and other regulatory bodies.
Matthew Elderfield, the former financial regulator, is also named among the defendants, although it is unclear why, as Elderfield now works for Lloyds.
Beades, who now runs a demolition business in Qatar, will allege that the world’s banks are buying up oil to artificially rig the oil market and inflate the cost of a barrel of crude, propping up loans made to the oil sector. He holds the regulators responsible.
It isn’t just a spotty conspiracy theory to say the oil market is fixed. It is mainstream opinion that the oil market is rigged by producers such as Saudi Arabia. But also by the world’s banks to prop up loans?
This will be for Beades to prove. If he does it, he will be an international hero. If he doesn’t, he should still get plenty of attention-grabbing trips to court out of it. And plenty more chances to tweak the nose of the establishment, which he is, of course, perfectly entitled to do.
Independent TD Mattie McGrath has said he supports the intention behind the delivery of a Plenary Summons to the Governor of the Central Bank Professor Philip Lane and a similar Plenary Summons requesting the Central Bank of Ireland to appear before the High Court within 35 days. Deputy McGrath was speaking after Mr Jerry Beades, Chairman of Friends of Banking Ireland issued identical summons’ against all European Financial Regulatory Authorities and the European Central Bank:
“These plenary summons’ were issued in the main in order to clarify what measures, if any, are in place to offset increasing speculation around the collapse in oil prices and the impact that this is having on the associated loans advanced for energy exploration.
We wish to highlight that global financial institutions such as Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase and Citigroup have publicly admitted to setting aside billions of dollars in reserves to cover losses arising from the collapse in oil prices which in turn is leading to grave concern about this potential contagion spreading to the European banking system.
I have asked the Minister for Finance if he will request a report from the Central Bank about this matter and in particular if he is satisfied that the current regulatory oversight is sufficiently strong to detect a repeat of similar practices that were linked to the development of sub-prime mortgage crisis.
There is genuine fear that the European banking system and indeed the Irish banking sector is dangerously exposed in this area and that this issue is not receiving the kind of attention that it warrants,” concluded Deputy McGrath.