As P O’Neill says over on Irish Election, Richardson is joining the dots. This is the first mention of US dollars being used in relation to FF donations. And as we all know by now, Ahern denies having received $45,000. Or does he?
The lodgment on 5th December 1994 was not a dollar lodgment
There has been some speculation about this sum. The lodgment of about £28,700 on 5th December 1994 was a cash lodgment which is not exactly £30,000 sterling but rather is a lesser sum and may have been a mixture of sterling and Irish pounds. Hence it is in an irregular amount. It is not a dollar sum. I never had $45,000 either then, before then or since. There are no dollar transactions in my accounts. I do not deal nor have I ever dealt in dollars.
In addition two points need to be emphasized. Firstly, at the appropriate AIB rate for dollars on that date, a lodgment of £28,772.90 would equate not to $45,000 but to $44,277.68. Secondly, there are a number of combinations of sterling and Irish pounds that result in the amount which was lodged. The sum of $45,000 was never lodged to any account maintained by Ms. Larkin for the purpose of the house.
It is clear that Ahern is wrong on this, and he has conceded as much. But if Richardson had previously changed $10,000 US dollars into Irish, is it not possible he also changed $45,000? Would Ahern not have received the Irish total, but still allow him say he never dealt in dollars?
The mention of Norman Turner as the donor of the $10,000 is also interesting, given that Turner paid for trips by Ahern to Manchester, which cost upwards of £2,500 each. What chance that Ahern received $45,000, or the equivalent of that sum?