Top Irish bankers on trial for the first time over AIB share claims

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Three former executives from Anglo Irish Bank have gone on trial in Dublin.

It is the first such case since the financial crisis that forced the Irish government to accept an eighty five billion euro international bailout.

Sean FitzPatrick – the bank’s former chairman and chief executive – along with former chief financial officer Pat Whelan and former finance director William McAteer deny charges that they provided unlawful financial assistance.

Prosecutors said they lent money to a number of investors, businessmen and their families to buy the bank’s shares, thereby boosting the price of those shares.

The extremely complicated trial is due to last three to four months, with as many as 100 witnesses due to give evidence.