Sinn Féin Finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD, responding to the news tonight that the only two bankers convicted in relation to the banking collapse will only serve community services, said that the Irish people have been shown no such leniancy.
He said the public have been forced to serve a jail sentence because of bankers’ crimes.
Deputy Doherty said:
“I can’t help but think tonight of the many good people I have met over the years who said to me that they know no banker will ever serve a day in prison for what they did to this State.
“The judge in the Anglo trial has correctly pointed out that other bankers and agencies share the blame for what happened at Anglo. However, two bankers were found guilty of a corporate crime, the only bankers to date to have been convicted. Their sentence – community service.
“We have seen in the past that if someone cannot pay their TV licence, they’ve faced jail sentences and often served those sentences. People have been sent to prison for unpaid fines. If they simply couldn’t afford those fines, or choose to feed and clothe their children over paying them, that was seen as their problem.
“The fact is, the Irish people have not been able to avoid the jail sentence they’ve been handed down as a result of the banking collapse. The bankers involved, Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and Labour, and greedy developers have escaped the excesses of the €30 billion worth of austerity that has been foisted onto the shoulders of the ordinary Irish family. While the families face poverty, unemployment, emigration and other hardships, these two bankers today face community service. Who has got the better deal?
“This trial has cost the taxpayer huge money. The potential sentence for the crime these men were convicted of was up to five years. Community service is a slap in the face for the Irish people.”