The man credited with bringing down Sean Gallagher’s Presidential election campaign profited from his relationship with Sinn Fein candidate Martin McGuinness.
It has emerged that McGuinness paid convicted fuel smuggler Morgan almost $5000 during the election campaign.
It was Armagh businessman Morgan who sensationally revealed Gallagher’s links with Fianna Fail just days before the country went to the polls.
The claims, broadcast live on national television, derailed Gallagher’s chances of winning the election that eventually saw Michael D Higgins become Irish President.
McGuinness alleged on the programme that Morgan had handed Gallagher a cheque for Fianna Fail as part of a 2008 fund raising campaign by the party.
A tweet, verifying the claim, was read out during the live TV debate amongst the candidates on Irish state television but RTE has since admitted it was false.
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Now the publication of candidate’s expenses for the campaign has revealed that Morgan’s fuel company was paid almost $5,000 by McGuinness during the election.
The Irish Times reports that Morgan Fuels Ireland Ltd received three payments totalling close to $5,000 from McGuinness according to documents released by the Standards in Public Office Commission.
Morgan Fuels is owned by Morgan, who alleged that Gallagher collected a cheque from him at Morgan Fuels headquarters in County Armagh.
In the summary of McGuinness’s election expenses given to the commission, his agent detailed the candidate’s transport and travel expenses which included petrol and diesel.
Morgan Fuels Ireland Ltd was paid a total of €2,871.46 for fuel in three separate payments of €948.88, €765.98 and €1,156.60.
A Sinn Féin spokeswoman told the paper that the payments related to fuel for the presidential campaign bus. “The driver had a card from Morgan Fuels which he used for refilling the tank,” she said.
McGuinness, who was third at the polls, incurred a total of more than $400,000 in election expenses and secured enough votes to ensure that he was reimbursed for $250,000.
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