Independent TD Michael Lowry fined €15,000 for tax offences

Judge Martin Nolan said he did not believe a custodial sentence was appropriate

Independent TD Michael Lowry fined €15,000 for tax offences

Michael Lowry. Photo: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

Updated: 16.55

Independent TD Michael Lowry has been fined €15,000 for filing incorrect corporation tax returns and failing to keep proper books of account.

The judge said he did not believe a custodial sentence was appropriate.

In August 2002, Mr Lowry directed a €372,000 commission owed to his refrigeration company to be paid to a third party in the Isle of Man.

His trial heard the payment did not appear on his company's books until 2006, when he instructed his accountants to record it.

By doing so, it gave the impression the payment was received that year and it had a knock-on effect for the company’s corporation tax liability.

He, and his company Garuda Ltd, were convicted on Tuesday afternoon and the jury failed to reach agreement on four other tax offences.

A custodial sentence of six months or more would have forced him to give up his Dáil seat.

Judge Martin Nolan considered his previous good character and his record as a public representative as mitigating factors - as well as the length of time the investigation took.

He said he did not think a custodial sentence or community service was appropriate or suitable in this case, and instead fined him €15,000 and his company €10,000.

He also disqualified him from being a company director for three years.