Bóthar ex-CEO admits to misappropriating funds from charity
Posted on 27th April 2021 at 19:54
The former CEO of Bóthar has admitted misappropriating funds from the Limerick charity and has said he shared tens of thousands of euro in cash with two founding members of the organisation.
David Moloney, who retired as CEO in February after eight years in the position, said he and the former CEO, the late Peter Ireton, misappropriated hundreds of thousands of euro in cash that the charity was led to believe went to nuns who work with the poor in Tanzania.
Mr Ireton, one of the founders of Bóthar, died tragically in his home last week. On the same day Mr Moloney, who up to then had been denying any wrongdoing, admitted that he had been taking money from the charity known for its work with poor families in rural Africa and elsewhere.
Frank Beatty SC,for Bóthar, said that Mr Moloney has also admitted that he “concocted” payments from Bóthar to a company in England in association with Billy Kelly, for the benefit of both men.
Mr Kelly is another founder of the Limerick charity. He moved to England in 2003 and set up a charity there, Msaada, which was focused on helping people in Rwanda.
Mr Moloney has now admitted that he got £36,000 from money that nominally went to the English company, and said Mr Kelly £40,000, the Bóthar chairman, Harry Lawlor, told the court in an affidavit.
The court was told the latest assessment of the total amount that has been misappropriated from Bóthar is €769,000, up from the €465,000 the court was told about two weeks ago. Investigations are ongoing.
Mr Moloney has said he wants to apologise to the charity and to make restitution, but the charity still has concerns, Mr Beatty told Mr Justice Senan Allen.
The former CEO has not disclosed to the charity what he has done with the money, he said.
“Given the enormous sums of money that Mr Moloney withdrew it is simply inconceivable that he does not retain a great deal of cash at this time,” he said.
However the court heard that Mr Moloney’s position is that he spent the money on his lifestyle.
He is now living on a social welfare disability allowance and has to pay a mortgage and car loans. He and his wife have two young children.
He wants to use money that is his pension fund to pay restitution, but understands that his wife has an interest in what happens to his assets, including the family home that is in his sole name, the court was told.
The allegations against Mr Moloney, of Clino, Newport, Co Tipperary, include that Bóthar funded a €10,000 hay shed on a farm he owns.
The court heard Mr Moloney is asserting his right to pension funds from his work at Bóthar that could be used to repay the allegedly misappropriated funds, but Mr Beatty said the two sides were very much in dispute over the pension money.
Mr Justice Allen directed that the freezing order against Mr Moloney’s assets be increased to €769,178, and that he swear a statement as to what Bóthar money was taken and his current assets, by May 4th next. He is also ordered to identify any third parties involved.
The judge said the order did not apply to assets held by Mrs Moloney in her own name.
He adjourned the case to June 2nd next, for mention.
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