Denis O'Brien accused of illegally divulging information to the press

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Denis O’Brien, the second biggest Independent News & Media shareholder, has been accused by the Moriarty tribunal, a public inquiry into the financial affairs of senior Irish politicians, of illegally divulging information about its early findings.

The claim comes after he gave interviews to string of Irish Sunday newspapers a fortnight ago in which he attacked the inquiry for being “out of control” and said it had made 60 “negative findings” against him.

The inquiry is investigating the awarding of Ireland’s second mobile phone licence to a consortium headed by O’Brien.

The tribunal has also written to one of the newspapers, the Sunday Times, asking it to explain why it published an interview with O’Brien in which he made his claims.

The Irish Times said lawyers for Mr O’Brien have rejected the claim, which arises from interviews he gave to four Sunday newspapers a fortnight ago, and have said there was no legal basis for the tribunal to make such an allegation.

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