Europe

Housekeeper to U2 star Adam Clayton on trial for theft

Adam Clayton and Paul McGuinness
Image caption U2 bass guitarist Adam Clayton (left) leaves court with U2 manager Paul McGuinness

Adam Clayton's former personal assistant and housekeeper has gone on trial, accused of stealing almost 3m euros (£2.4m) from the U2 bass player.

Carol Hawkins, from Lower Rathmines Road in Dublin, pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to 181 counts of theft.

She is accused of stealing money from two of Mr Clayton's bank accounts over a four year period from 2004 to 2008.

The guitarist is due to give evidence in the trial which opens on Thursday.

Mr Clayton attended court on Wednesday, and was joined by U2 manager Paul McGuinness in the public gallery.

The 52-year-old bass player, dressed in a navy suit with a white shirt, listened as the registrar listed every charge against his former assistant.

Withdrawals

It took almost two hours to arraign 47-year-old Ms Hawkins on all the charges.

The alleged thefts totalled 2,862,567 euros (£2,321,623).

The court heard that on one occasion in 2007 she made a single withdrawal of 310,000 euros (£250,000)

The remainder of the alleged transactions ranged from 1,000 euros (£811) to 36,000 euros (£29,196) over the four-year period.

Judge Patrick McCartan swore in a jury of seven men and five women for the trial.

The case involves more than 30 witnesses and a 2,500 page book of evidence.

It is expected to last six weeks.