THE HIGH Court has continued for another four weeks an order restraining a company owned by crook Francois de Dietrich from reducing its bank account in Ballybofey, Co Donegal, below €1.7 million.

The order was granted to two Co Donegal businessmen, who are among a large number of people who invested substantial sums in the company.

The account of Etic Solutions Ltd, Ballybofey, a firm which allegedly represented to investors that it was involved in purchasing liquidation stock across Europe, has already been frozen on a Garda application. Mr Justice Roderick Murphy was told yesterday there were two Garda investigations into the main director of the company.

Daniel O’Donnell, with addresses at Termon, Co Donegal, and South 55th Court, Oaklawn, Illinois, US, is claiming he is owed some €1.6 million arising from his investment with Etic, while John O’Donnell (no relation), Cluain Ard, Letterkenny, claims some €74,000 is due to him. Both are seeking summary judgment against the company.

Noel Travers, for the businessmen, told the judge yesterday a warrant for the main director of Etic had been issued in Northern Ireland recently.

There had been no appearance for the company to date in this case and he believed it was unlikely a defence would be lodged in the proceedings, counsel added.

Mr Justice Murphy agreed to continue the freezing order for another four weeks. It applies to the company’s account at Allied Irish Banks’ branch at Main Street, Ballybofey, which remains frozen after an earlier application by the Garda and is said to contain a substantial credit sum.

Daniel O’Donnell claims he is owed some €1.69 million arising from an initial €100,000 investment made by him with Etic, while John O’Donnell claims he is owed some €74,000 arising from an investment of some €53,000.

Both men claim they have received no payments from the company and are seeking summary judgment for the amounts allegedly owed.

In separate affidavits, both men said they invested in Etic on foot of representations made to them by its local agent, Thomas Ryan, a former inter-county GAA footballer who was also involved in the management of the county team from 2008 to 2010.

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