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Pearse Doherty TD calls Mc Menamin fine 'a joke', says reckless lending must be a crime

11 December, 2018 - by Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin Finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has said the €23,000 fine received by Tom Mc Menamin for his role in Irish Nationwide is a “joke”.

Teachta Doherty contrasted the cost to the Irish people of the collapse of Irish Nationwide with the minimal fine levied on Mr. Mc Menamin.

The Donegal TD said reckless lending must be made a crime through legislation to ensure that in future bankers are held individually and criminally responsible for their actions.

Deputy Doherty said

“To be blunt the penalty imposed on Tom Mc Menamin is a joke which played on the Irish people. It sends out a message to bankers that no matter what they do there is ultimately little consequence for them.

"Mc Menamin was the most Senior Manager of Commercial Lending at INBS and the Central Bank have said he acted recklessly.

"It is time for reckless lending to be made a crime with a sentence which includes jail time. The cost to the people of this activity means this is a necessity. I have repeatedly called on the government to bring forward for legislation on this issue and will do so myself.

"Indeed former Governor Patrick Honohan has called for such legislation and it is already on the books in Britain.
"The focus must shift from the Central Bank’s administrative sanctions to full criminal sanction as legislated for by the Oireachtas.

"The failure to grasp this nettle will leave us back in the same space next year, or years down the road with bankers having the last laugh.”

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