In a stinging letter, the billionaire who was criticised by the Moriarty tribunal accused Ms Burton of “vindictiveness” and of making a “startling” personal attack on him.
Ms Burton is the second government minister to have received a letter of complaint from Mr O’Brien in the aftermath of his appearance on the New York Stock Exchange alongside Taoiseach Enda Kenny last March. Mr O’Brien also wrote to Lucinda Creighton — but the tone of his letter to Ms Burton — disclosed for the first time today — is harsher.
“I recognise that your political persuasion naturally leaves you unsympathetic towards someone in my position, but I remain concerned at the level of vindictiveness underpinning your remarks,” he wrote.
“That your comments would be endorsed in quick time by your party colleague, Minister Brendan Howlin TD, was an unsurprising display of political opportunism.
“I, clearly, am undeserving of any semblance of fair or balanced treatment. Political expediency demands outright condemnation. It is the easy option.”