battles £4m debt WESTLIFE star Shane Filan has started a court battle over massive debts.
A property company set up by the Irish boyband singer, 32, ran into trouble owing £4million.
He applied for a legal agreement in London this week to pay back creditors over a period of time.
A source said last night: “Shane was desperate to launch himself as a property tycoon when Westlife started to wind down.
“But it has backfired massively. The property company is saddled with millions of debt. “It’s been disastrous timing for him to invest in property amid a global economic crisis.
“He’s in dire straits.”
Cash crisis ... Shane and wife Gillian
The Flying Without Wings star was once said to be worth £25million.
He moved from Sligo, Ireland, to Cobham in Surrey at Christmas with his wife Gillian, 32, and their three children.
His trouble-hit property business Shafin Developments Ltd is based in Ireland.
Mansion ... star's home in Sligo
Shane and two family members are now being pursued by the Bank of Ireland in the Irish High Court over unpaid debts.
The bank was one of several that helped fund Shafin building projects.
One development, a community centre, office units, private clinic, gym, creche and 68 homes in Sligo, Ireland, was due to begin last summer but no work has taken place.
The firm lost £2.2million in 2009 and £2.4million in 2010. It also has £4.1million debts.
Westlife — once managed by X Factor judge Louis Walsh — have a final world tour lined up this year and will then split up.
Shane declined to comment last night.
http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/irishsun/irishshowbiz/4241864/Cash-strapped-Westlife-star-goes-to-court-over-loan.htmlCash strapped Westlife star goes to court over loan
By BLANAID MURPHY
Published: Today at 00:54 WESTLIFE’S Shane Filan has gone to court in a desperate bid to get the banks off his back after racking up massive debts.
The 32-year-old singer owes millions after the collapse of his property empire in the west of Ireland.
The Irish Sun has learned he applied for a legal order in Britain to stave off the banks.
A source revealed yesterday: “Shane filed for an IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement) in London with his creditors, which means he’s trying to come up with ways to pay them.”
The Flying Without Wings singer — who has sold 43 million records worldwide with Westlife, one of the biggest boy bands of all time — moved to Cobham, Surrey, with his family in December. But he left behind a failing property speculation business called Shafin Developments Ltd — which he set up with brother Finbarr.
The source explained: “Shane would have properties in the West of Ireland and in London.
“He has a penthouse in Sligo which was worth €1million in the boom and now it’s only worth a quarter of a million.
“You can see how it happened though. He bought property like everyone else in the Celtic Tiger and now the value of them has nosedived.”
The Royal Courts in London confirmed to the Irish Sun yesterday that Shane Filan had applied for an interim order for an Individual Voluntary Arrangement.
The interim order can stop creditors from taking legal action against a debtor while moves are put in place to approve an IVA.
No decision has yet been made on whether or not to grant it.
The explosive news will come as a shock to devoted fans of Westlife who were the biggest selling band of the 2000s.
They were formed in 1998 and had seven straight number one singles — equalling a record set by The Beatles. Alongside bandmates Nicky Byrne, Brian McFadden, Mark Feehily and Kian Egan, they sold 6.6 million singles and 11.9 million albums in the UK and had 14 number ones.
Bleak outlook ... Shane and Finbarr launched Shafin Developments in 2004
Westlife are on a money-spinning farewell world tour and will disband later this year.
Filan moved his wife Gillian and their three children Nicole, Patrick and Shane, from Sligo to Cobham last Christmas.
It was reported on Sunday that Bank of Ireland was suing Filan for unpaid debts.
Documents lodged in the Irish High Court show the bank is pursuing cases against the star and two members of his family, Finbarr and Peter.
Filan’s company also took out loans with Ulster Bank to build a 90-home estate in Dromahair, Co Leitrim.
However just 50 homes have been completed and many are being sold for lower than the cost of building them.
Shafin Developments Ltd also took out two further mortgages for development land in Carraroe, Co Sligo — where Shane has a house himself. They planned a community centre, office units, private clinic, gymnasium, creche facility and 68 homes due to start last summer — but no work on the site has taken place.
Other projects, including an 80-bed nursing home in Sligo and a supermarket in Dromahair, have also stalled.
Bank of Ireland also loaned the singer €1.3million to buy 58 hectares of farmland and mountainside in Leitrim to keep his horses.
Shafin Developments Ltd lost €2.75million in 2009 and €3million in 2010. The company is also carrying more than €4million of debt.
Filan auctioned off his James Bond-style Aston Martin for €398,000 last September. Westlife were originally signed by Simon Cowell and were managed by Louis Walsh.
Westlife’s main entertainment company, Bluenet Ltd, posted accumulated profits of €49,000 in 2010.
Another Westlife company, Blacknight Ltd, which generates revenue from broadcast licence income, posted a profit of €6,054.
When contacted by the Irish Sun yesterday both Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank said they do not comment on individual cases.
And a spokeswoman for Shane Filan said the star would not be commenting.