Second Spotlight Nama exposé at ‘advanced stage’

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A second BBC Spotlight programme investigating allegations surrounding the sale of Nama’s vast Northern Ireland loan book is at “an advanced stage”, the corporation has said.

In February, Spotlight broadcast secretly recorded footage showing senior business figure Frank Cushnahan admitting that he was in line for at least a portion of the millions of pounds sent to an off shore account as part of the £1.3 billion sale of the loans to US vulture fund Cerberus.

Frank Cushnahan secretly filmed by Spotlight, in footage broadcast in February

Frank Cushnahan secretly filmed by Spotlight, in footage broadcast in February

Contrary to what he had publicly claimed up to that point, Mr Cushnahan – a well-connected former banker who was a personal friend of the then First Minister Peter Robinson – was filmed telling associates that he had stood to benefit from the money sent to the Isle of Man account.

On Tuesday, two men were arrested in Co Down by the National Crime Agency, which has been investigating the massive transaction.

It has been reported that Mr Cushnahan and Ronnie Hanna, a former senior Nama figure, were the two men arrested. Both have previously denied any wrong-doing.

Now, it has emerged that further revelations are in the offing, but have been complicated by the arrest operation.

On Thursday evening, a BBC spokeswoman told the News Letter: “Spotlight is continuing to investigate the Nama story.

“A programme that is at an advanced stage cannot now be scheduled for broadcast as a result of arrests on Tuesday.”