Firm argues the World is sinking into the sea

THE island of Ireland, which was bought by a Dundalk man’s company for e20 million, is among a group of islands which are sinking, according to evidence put before a property tribunal.

THE island of Ireland, which was bought by a Dundalk man’s company for e20 million, is among a group of islands which are sinking, according to evidence put before a property tribunal.

The World - an ambitious construction project off the Gulf coast which includes ‘Ireland in the Sun’ - is gradually falling back into the sea, maintains a British lawyer for a firm bringing a case against the developer.

Located 4km from Dubai and measuring 5.3 acres (25 sq ft), ‘Ireland in the Sun’ is one of 300 artificial islands situated off the Gulf coast. Lawyers for Penguin Marine argued that the sands are eroding and the navigational channels between the archipelago of islands are silting up.

However, a spokesman for the state-run developer, Nakheel, insisted the islands were not sinking. The tribunal found in favour of Nakheel on Thursday, January 20, adding it would give full reasoning later.

Larionovo Ltd - a collapsed property agent founded by Raymond Norton from the Avenue Road, Dundalk - was one of Ireland’s best known overseas property agents in 2007 as it invested heavily in the ‘Ireland in the Sun’ scheme.

Norton bought the island of Ireland for e20m and planned to turn it into a popular destination for highrolling tourists.Construction of the World Resort was completed in 2008. Following the economic downturn and the collapse of the property market, Paul McCann was appointed liquidator of Larionovo Ltd in January 2009. Shortly aferwards, the owner of the company that bought Ireland for e28m in 2009, John O’Dolan, killed himself.