The lawyer of David Drumm, the former Anglo Irish Bank boss, has told a US court that Ireland is seeking his extradition for “a political purpose.” He faces 33 criminal charges including counts of false reporting, giving unlawful financial assistance, forgery, being privy to the falsification of documents, conspiracy to defraud and false accounting.

According to his extradition warrant if convicted of the most serious charge he could face “an unlimited term of imprisonment.”

His lawyer, Tracey Miner, told a Boston court, this Tuesday, that she plans to seek his release on bail. Drumm will remain in jail until his bail hearing this Friday.

Another hearing has been scheduled for November 10 to establish a timetable for his extradition case. His lawyer also indicated to the court that they plan to challenge his extradition.

Read more: David Drumm says he will never get a fair hearing in Ireland

Miner told the court that preparation for this extradition case could take longer because it was a "little bit more complicated."

Drumm’s lawyer said "There are additional considerations on extradition, such as whether it is being done for a political purpose."

Judge Donald Cabell said he would consider the bail request. However he also noted that "in extradition proceedings there is a presumption towards detention."

He added "We're being asked to honor a request of the Irish Government."

Assistant US Attorney Amy Burkart said the prosecution would be seeking Drumm's detention pending the hearing and mentioned for the record that the Irish Consulate had been notified following his arrest. Burkart also pointed out that Drumm is a flight risk and they would challenge his application for bail.

The accused was arrested on Saturday and has remained in custody since. He appeared in court dressed in a creased blue shirt and jeans. He has shackles on his ankles and was handcuffed behind his back. His wife, Lorraine, sat a few rows behind him.

Drumm was chief executive at Anglo Irish Bank from 2005 to 2008. In 2009 he moved to the United States, in the year that Anglo collapsed and was bailed out by the Irish taxpayers.

Once in the US he filed for bankruptcy. However this bid failed and a Boston court ruled that he could be liable for debts of $11.9 million.

Bailout of Anglo Irish Bank cost the Irish taxpayers $34 billion, close to 20% of the country’s annual output. The downfall of the bank played a large role in Ireland’s devastating economic collapse and the ensuing bailout from its Eurozone partners in 2010.

Outside the courthouse Miner told the press "We're going to see if we can get him released.

"It was outrageous that he was picked up on a Saturday of a three-day weekend, and we have defenses."