Brendan O’Carroll is to give a struggling businessman €30,000 to start a new venture, his generosity spurred on by the success of Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie’s opening weekend.
However, it has since emerged that the man in question, Longford-man Eddie Molloy, is facing a €60,000 claim from the taxman.
O’Carroll got talking to former councillor Mr Molloy while he was guest hosting Marian Finucane’s RTE radio show on Saturday.
Mr Molloy rang in and described how the recession has left him and his wife Rose forced to live off of the kindness of relatives since their business went bust.
They had previously run the local Supervalu in Granard, but sold it to invest in property just before the housing market crashed.
“We lost everything. We are literally broke now,” said Mr Molloy to O’Carroll on Saturday.
O’Carroll said: “Well, I’ll tell you, Eddie, I’m very lucky, I had a movie that opened this week and it’s going to make me a fortune.
“I’ll put down €30,000 in front of you and see if that idea works.
“And if it does work Eddie, you’re not to dip into it and start going playing golf.
“And if we can make that idea work together, you being 61, me being 50ish, we’ll show just exactly what two old me can do.”
It then emerged that the taxman this year issued a €59,277 claim against a company ran by him and his wife.
In O’Carroll’s second stint on the show on Sunday, he said he would be honouring his initial pledge but apologised that his public gesture had exposed Mr Molloy’s business affairs.
“It’s nice for me to have a microphone to get a chance to apologise to Eddie because my intention in helping him was not to shame him any further,” he said.
“The thing that struck me about him was that he had an idea he thought would work, and would get him out of trouble and give him a little bit of hope.
“It’s very difficult at the moment for people to be getting through the day, but to be getting through the day and holding up a little bit of hope is even more difficult.
“And that’s really what’s going to get us out o this, the hope of people who are having a go.
“And I think he’s a good bet, and if he’s not, sure, I’ll just get on the line with the taxman myself.”