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HAUGHEY BANKER IS DEAD; Dunne probe moneyman has heart attack.

A Top banker who helped set up secret bank accounts where Charles Haughey's cash gifts from Ben Dunne were stashed has died.

John Furze was the off-shore link used by Haughey's accountant to salt away the former Taoiseach's cash.

The multi-millionaire banker, who worked in the Cayman Islands, died of a heart attack during a visit to Miami. He was in his mid-fifties.

His death removes the second and final player who knew every nuance of Charlie's off-shore deals.

And like Haughey's pal, accountant Des Traynor, he died taking the 71-year-old politician's secrets to the grave.

He consistently stalled attempts by investigators from the Payments to Politicians Tribunal to breach the confidentiality of the Caribbean tax haven.

He refused to talk to the team sent to interview him and opposed legal action to force him to co-operate.

The Cayman courts backed his case and tribunal lawyers were in the process of appealing their ruling.

The admission by Mr Haughey two weeks ago that he had received a pounds 1.3million bung from former stores boss Ben Dunne meant Mr Furze's cooperation was no longer crucial.

Haughey admitted receiving the massive gift but named dead accountant Des Traynor as bagman. The name of wealthy banker Furze also cropped up regularly in evidence.

He and Traynor were friends and business partners. Together they controlled the Ansbacher account with the Guinness Mahon merchant bank in Dublin.

And they set up a special bank account in the Caymans where Traynor channelled millions for clients anxious to legally minimise their tax obligations.

Several of the cheques paid by tycoon Dunne to Haughey were made out in John Furze's name.

And the pounds 1.3million gift was routed to Haughey through the Ansbacher and Cayman accounts. to co-operate. The Cayman courts backed his case and tribunal lawyers were appealing their ruling. Haughey's admission two weeks ago that he received a pounds 1.3million gift from former stores boss Ben Dunne meant Mr Furze's co-operation was no longer crucial. Haughey admitted receiving the cash but named dead accountant Des Traynor as bagman. The name of wealthy banker Furze also cropped up regularly in evidence. He and Traynor were friends and business partners. They controlled the Ansbacher account with the Guinness Mahon merchant bank in Dublin. And they set up a bank account in the Caymans where Traynor channelled millions for clients anxious to legally minimise their tax obligations. Several of the cheques paid by tycoon Dunne to Haughey were made out in John Furze's name. And the pounds 1.3million gift was routed to Haughey through the Ansbacher and Cayman accounts.
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Author:Kierans, John
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jul 29, 1997
Words:434
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