Tracker mortgage scandal labelled "corporate theft"

Sinn Féin want affected customers to head for their local Garda station...

Sinn Féin's finance spokesperson has decried the tracker mortgage scandal as "corporate theft" as the party pushes for the Government and Central Bank to do more to address the issue.

Pearse Doherty said ahead of a Dáil debate on the scandal tonight:

"This has been going on for quite a number of years and I think it's been going on without attention and without the support that the victims of the tracker mortgage scandal deserve...

"[There are] 15,000 individuals who have had hundreds of millions robbed from them. And what's happened here – in my view, it's corporate theft ."

The party is encouraging victims of the scandal to report their cases to the Gardaí. It is set to table a motion later today calling for a strict deadline for those affected to be financially compensated.

Doherty continued:

"This is theft and I would encourage people, individuals who were victims of this to go to their Garda station and report what has happened. Because if this happened down the street and somebody mugged you, then you would be able to make a complaint and the person would be taken before the court.

"...We need to send a clear signal that this will not be tolerated in our country anymore."

Finance Minister Michael Noonan recently described the actions of the banks involved as "outrageous".

He said:

"I think it is important to put on the record as well that the Central Bank has statutory reporting obligations to An Garda Síochána and to other agencies where it suspects a criminal offence may have been committed by a supervised entity."

There are 15 lenders are involved in the industry-wide probe into cases when customers were moved off of tracker rates.

Tracker mortgages are set at a fixed percentage or 'margin' above the ECB rate. As its rates plummeted during the financial crisis, customer rates should have dropped to close to 1%.

Those affected are expected to get compensation of close to 15% of the savings that they missed out on as a result.