Former INM chief "appalled" at widespread publication of allegations against him

Leslie Buckley says “due process and fair procedures" have been "wholly disregarded"

Former INM chief "appalled" at widespread publication of allegations against him

File photo of INM Chairman Leslie Buckley at the Independent News and Media AGM in Dublin, 25-11-2017. Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews

The former head of Ireland’s largest newspaper publishing house has lashed out the “widespread circulation” of court documents containing allegations against him.

In a statement this afternoon, the former chair of Independent News and Media (INM), Leslie Buckley said “due process and fair procedures have been completely and wholly disregarded in this instance.”

INM publishes The Irish Independent among a range of other titles.

The publisher is at the centre of a major data breach controversy amid claims email data relating to a number of INM staff was taken off the company premises and “interrogated” by a number of outside companies over a number of months.

A list containing the names of 19 people whose data may have been shared has been widely circulated.

The data is alleged to have been accessed by six companies external to INM.

A number of reports this morning contained details believed to be included in the affidavit lodged by the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (ODCE) - including allegations against Mr Buckley.

In his statement, My Buckley said: "I am appalled at the widespread circulation and sharing of the ODCE's court document containing the most serious and damaging of allegations relating to my tenure as Chairman of INM plc.” 

“I believe that due process and fair procedures have been completely and wholly disregarded in this instance.

“I have consistently maintained a position of not commenting in the midst of an ongoing statutory process, but on this occasion I am compelled to do so.

“I will continue to cooperate fully with the ODCE and will robustly defend my position against each and every allegation.

“I am advised to reserve my position."

ODCE director Ian Drennan is reportedly seeking to appoint inspectors to INM to investigate the alleged data breach and a range of other issues.