U2 bassist's PA 'stole fortune'
Irish band U2's bass player, Adam Clayton, has taken his former personal assistant to court, claiming she embezzled €2.8-million from him.
The Daily Telegraph reported on its website yesterday that Clayton said in the Circuit Criminal Court in Dublin that Carol Hawkins, 48, had worked for him for 16 years, earning up to €48000 a year and living rent free at his home.
She was initially employed as a housekeeper at the bassist's Georgian mansion - Danesmoate - in Rathfarnham, South Dublin, but was promoted over the years.
The newspaper reported that senior counsel Colm O'Briain told the jury Clayton had appointed Hawkins as signatory to a number of his accounts.
It was from two accounts, known as the Fitzwilliam account and the Danesmoate account, that she is accused of withdrawing €2.8-million over four years. The funds were allegedly placed in three accounts - her personal account, a joint account between herself and her husband, John, and a Bank of Ireland Credit Card Services account.
Hawkins denies all the charges. Hawkins and her then husband, who had also been employed by Clayton as a driver, lived at the musician's home.
The property was refurbished during 2005 and Hawkins and her husband were forced to move into another house. Clayton picked up the monthly rent of about €2600. The Telegraph said the pair had also been paid a joint salary of about €3800 a month.
But Clayton continued to pay Hawkins the full amount even after her marriage ended in 2007, eventually raising her monthly income to €4080.