Minister’s decision to allow PTSB sell 10,000 mortgages to Vulture Fund with rotten record in dealing with mortgage holders- disgraceful
Utterly scandalous that Vulture Funds that may evict mortgage holders will pay little or no tax
People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett has said that it is disgraceful that Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe has allowed Permanent TSB to sell more than 10,000 mortgages to Start Mortgages, an affiliate of the Texan based Vulture Fund, Lone Star.
During the boom, Start Mortgages specialised in sub-prime loans to people unable to get loans from mainstream lenders. They then charged massive interest rates on this money and took aggressive action to repossess homes when people inevitably got into difficulty. In Ireland, they have been one of the most active financial institutions in court repossession cases.
Just last year they were forced to stop repossession proceedings when it emerged that Start had been overcharging people illegally here. Instead of putting people out of their homes they had to reduce arrears and interest rates for a number customers thought to be in the thousands. This is ominous for the more than ten thousand mortgages sold to Start by PTSB.
The TD for Dún Laoghaire also pointed out that it was “utterly scandalous” and “added insult to injury” that this Vulture Fund, with a horrible track record of evicting people, that will take over these mortgages, pay little or no tax in this country due to legislation called L-QIAIF introduced in 2013 by the Fine Gael- Labour government to attract the vultures to Ireland.
Richard Boyd Barrett TD said:
“It is disgraceful that Minister Paschal Donohoe would sign off on this sale of over 10,000 mortgages to Start Mortgages, a subsidiary of Lone Star, who have a horrendous record in taking aggressive action to evict people.
“After the financial crash, the people of this country bailed out these banks to the tune of tens of billions. For this, the public get the Minister for Finance not only failing to use his 75% share in the bank to protect these vulnerable mortgage holders, but he is effectively gifting the wolf the keys to the front door. The Minister should block this sale as he has a duty to protect these vulnerable mortgage holders, many of whom are families.
“It is also utterly scandalous that the very entities that the Minister will be gifting these mortgages to pay little or no tax in this country due to dodgy tax arrangements cooked up in 2013 by his predecessor, Michael Noonan, who effectively invited these vulture funds in in the first place.
“At every turn, Fine Gael have facilitated and championed the interests of greedy profit driven vulture funds at the expense of mortgage holders and those affected by the housing crisis. When the history books are written we will look back and say that this enormous hand over of countless billions in mortgages and property assets to these vulture funds was one of the great crimes committed by an Irish government against its own people. They should hang their heads in shame.”