Tycoon 'faces life on €11,000 state pension'
Thursday April 15 2010
By Tim Healy
BUSINESSMAN Brendan Murtagh yesterday lost a court bid to retain funds worth up to €1.2m towards "living expenses" over a case in which investors are pursuing a €28m debt.
Commercial Court head, Mr Justice Peter Kelly, said Mr Murtagh (64), purchaser of Smart Telecom, once had an estimated net worth of €271m but now has liabilities of €353m including "colossal" sums owed to Anglo Irish Bank.
Mr Murtagh would have to come to terms with the fact he was no longer very wealthy, may have to reduce his living standards accordingly and consider whether he needed two houses that had been transferred into his wife's name, the judge said.
He found it hard to see how Mr Murtagh would need to keep share and pension-fund assets, valued between €700,000 and €1.2m, for "reasonable" living expenses.
He could only imagine the sense of injustice investors would have if Mr Murtagh was allowed that when they were left "high and dry" with a €28m debt......(cont'd)