Friday 20 February 2009

Dunne lodges €1m in 'unpaid fees' case

DEVELOPER Sean Dunne is to lodge €1m in court pending the outcome of a legal action against him by a firm of estate agents over €1.5m in alleged unpaid fees.

CB Richard Ellis (CBRE) initiated proceedings against Mr Dunne in the Commercial Court last month and yesterday the judge was told the case would go to a hearing and Mr Dunne would lodge €1m in court within 21 days along with a defence and counter-claim.

Late last year, the High Court found that an €83m office block development on Dublin's north quays should not have been built because the Dublin Docklands Development Authority had accepted land from the developer as part of a deal which led to the building's go-ahead.

CBRE, with registered offices at Connaught House, Burlington Road, Dublin, is claiming the fees in relation to a commercial property transaction involving the sale of premises at Sir John Rogerson's Quay, Dublin, and the part exchange of that with another property -- Hume House, at Pembroke Road.

Last month, the court was told Mr Dunne was contending the alleged liability was not his but of one of his companies, Mountbrook Homes Ltd. CBRE claims the agreement was made with Mr Dunne personally.

CBRE director Willie Dowling said the aspect of his company's fee in dispute related to an investment fee agreed at 0.75pc of the sale price, which amounted to €1.44m plus VAT. He later negotiated a reduction of that fee on a goodwill basis to €1.25m, plus VAT (€1.52m).

In November last year, Mr Dunne disputed the level of fee which was "entirely at odds" with his previous position.

The case was adjourned to April.

Tim Healy and Paul Melia
Irish Independent

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