Ireland's former richest man, Anthony O'Reilly, ordered to sell assets as creditors circle

WorldAssociated Press

He was Ireland's first business star and once its richest citizen, but now Anthony O'Reilly faces possible bankruptcy.

A Dublin judge has ordered O'Reilly to sell assets, including his prized 750-acre mansion and equestrian center, to repay loans to one bank exceeding 22 million euros ($30 million).

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Friday's judgment rejected pleas from O'Reilly's lawyers for a six-month postponement. The judge said Allied Irish Banks already had waited too long, and further delays could allow other banks to make their own bids to seize the 78-year-old tycoon's most valuable possession, his country estate west of Dublin.

O'Reilly's lawyers say he owes eight banks a total of 195 million euros. He lost an estimated 750 million euros in investments in two companies he long led: Waterford Wedgwood and Independent News & Media.