Press Release from MRI Support Group:
Today, 51 people from all over the UK and Republic of Ireland have attended a Marbella court to ratify their lawsuit against Darragh MacAnthony, owner of Peterborough FC. MacAnthony, 35, and his former joint chief executives of MRI Overseas Property (MRI), Michael Liggan and Dominic Pickering, have been accused of ‘theft and misappropriation of funds’ in a claim by the claimants who say they lost more than half a million pounds in undelivered furniture five years ago. The Spanish judge has already considered the facts and believes that there is a case to answer The claimants have gradually come together over the last few years on an on-line support group, www.mri-sg.org which, at present, has over 1,000 members. This is the first of a series of lawsuits the group plan to bring against MacAnthony who founded MRI.
In June 2011, MacAnthony wrote on his blog that this claim for had been ‘thrown out’ by the Spanish courts. The allegations made in Spain follow what Northern Ireland MP Sammy Wilson described in the House of Commons in 2010 as a property fraud where MRI, or related companies such as MRI Overseas Property, acted as the agent and developer. In 2008, as a result of complaints against MRI, a tribunal held by the National Federation of Property Professionals said it was ‘appalled to hear of the company’s misleading business practices’. It issued fines of £5,000 and MacAnthony resigned his membership of the Federation. The Costa del Sol property empire has all but vanished. An investigation traced MRI companies to an empty office in Madrid. Documents show that last October MacAnthony and Pickering, as directors, handed MRI Overseas Property Group to a Peruvian company, under the directorship of octogenarian Fernando Arespacochaga, which appears to have never traded.”
I did nip over to Darragh MacAnthony’s Blog to see if he’d issued any release to outline his side of the story, as he’s been known to do in the past, but the site seems to be down, it simply redirects to http://congatarc.ru/mays/index.php. I’m not sure if this is a temporary or permanent issue.
A number of former MRI clients took the opportunity to protest outside the court in Marbella, you can see a picture of the scene here.