Disgraced former minister Ivor Callely’s family home is up for sale to pay off property speculation gambling debts.
The Victorian-era listed property on one of the most sought-after addresses in Dublin is on the market for almost €2m. The five-bed house also includes a snooker room, which is currently adorned with a large painting of tigers, redolent of the former Fianna Fáil TD’s past as a Celtic Tiger property developer.
The house is being sold by Mr Callely’s estranged wife, Jennifer Foley, on foot of a court order to sell to pay debts. The house on St Lawrence’s Road in Clontarf went on the market before Christmas with a ‘For Sale’ sign going up last week. The family bought the house in the early 1990s when Mr Callely’s political career was still in the ascendant. But the work on the house played a pivotal role in his political downfall.
Mr Callely was a Fianna Fáil TD from 1989 to 2007. He served as a junior minister in Bertie Ahern’s government until he resigned in December 2005 after revelations that one of the country’s biggest construction companies paid for work carried out at his home in the early 1990s.
He lost his seat at the next election and was appointed a Senator by Mr Ahern in 2007.
He was jailed for five months in 2014 after he admitted fraudulently claiming €4,207.45 in expenses from the Oireachtas on forged mobile phone invoices between November 2007 and December 2009.
However, debts from property investments have led to the sale of the home. Mr Callely transferred his home into the ownership of his estranged wife a decade ago, a move which also had the effect of placing it beyond the reach of creditors at the time. The couple have since separated.
Last year, a finance company obtained summary judgment for €1.5m at the High Court against Mr Callely over loans for property investments. Mr Callely opposed the application by Everyday Finance DAC but his estranged wife, Ms Foley, reached a settlement with the company involving her consenting through her lawyer to judgment for €1.5m against her. A stay applied on the judgment against Ms Foley until the summer and Everyday also agreed not to seek to sell before then the property at St Lawrence Road, Clontarf, where Ms Foley is living. The property is now being sold on foot of a court judgment.
The house is on the market for €1.95m. Given the location and condition of the property, interest is expected to be high. The ground floor has three formal reception rooms, a large family kitchen and a dining room. Upstairs are five bedrooms, including a master bedroom with dressing room and en-suite bathroom.
Source: Irish News