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Road Town, Tortola, where Sheila McCaffrey's case is being heard Photo by: Irish Times

Irish woman and Bill Clinton friend in Caribbean oil money legal battle

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Road Town, Tortola, where Sheila McCaffrey's case is being heard Photo by: Irish Times

Irishwoman Sheila McCaffrey from Kinawley in County Fermanagh has gone to court in the Caribbean to get her share of oil money from a company she helped found.

McCaffrey told 4Ni.com she has been in 'living hell' since the company she directed struck oil and then dropped her.

McCaffery has not seen a cent in profit from International Natural Energy, which found oil reserves off the coast of Belize in Central America in 2006.

Responding to the snub McCaffrey has gone to the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court seeking an order to force the company to buy her shares.

McCaffery is not the only Irish national with a claim. Tony Quinn, another former director, stands to earn $23 million from the company but his case has been postponed until McCaffrey’s is dealt with.

McCaffrey alleges that the company is being mismanaged, with money being diverted to Quinn and fellow Irish founder Susan Morrice.

But the pair strongly deny McCaffery's claims, reportedly saying she was removed from the company because she had become impossible to work with and she was unsuited to running the business as it grew.

McCaffrey and Morrice met through one of former president Bill Clinton's initiatives to promote investment in Northern Ireland. They joined with Paul Marriott, an English drilling contractor, and more than 300 other people who each invested at least 40,000 euro in the oil exploration venture.

The search led to a lucky rare oil find in Belize but since that date International Natural Energy has been constantly embroiled in legal battles.

Meanwhile McCaffrey has not received a single payment for her shares and she has struggled for years to get her case to the Caribbean court.

McCaffery told 4ni.com that her evidence to court was just 'a snapshot of the living hell' she went through over the past five years.

Judgment in the case is expected by September.

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