Wife of Sean Dunne fails to stop legal proceedings going ahead

Gayle Killilea challenged an attempt to reverse asset transfers between her and her husband

Wife of Sean Dunne fails to stop legal proceedings going ahead

Sean Dunne at the Punchestown Racing Festival in 2006 | Photocall file photo

The wife of bankrupt property developer Seán Dunne has failed in her attempt to stop certain proceedings going ahead before the Irish courts.

Gayle Killilea challenged an attempt to reverse multi-million euro asset transfers between her and her husband.

A 2005 agreement saw various assets, including a hotel in South Africa, being transferred by Seán Dunne to Ms. Killilea.

The court official assigned to handle Mr. Dunne’s bankruptcy has called the validity of that agreement into question and wants the transfers reversed.

Ms. Killilea tried to have his action struck out by arguing that it duplicates a case already being pursued against her by a trustee in the US.

Mr. Dunne petitioned for bankruptcy there three years ago, and has also been declared a bankrupt here in Ireland.

To have such an action heard in both jurisdictions would be an abuse of process, his wife claimed.

But Ms. Justice Caroline Costello ruled against her today.

She decided that Ireland is the forum with the “most real and substantial connection to the dispute” and that Irish law, crucially, is the most applicable.