Tony O'Reilly, the Irish businessman whose investments once stretched to the New Zealand Herald newspaper, has asked for more time to sell assets to repay debts after a bank won a 22.6 million euro judgement against the one-time billionaire, the Irish Times reported.

In Ireland's Commercial Court, Allied Irish Bank accused O'Reilly of being insolvent and a judgment was entered for 22 million euros of loans to him and a further 23 million euros due from two investment companies, according to the report. The court heard O'Reilly owed a total of 195 million euros to eight banks and a fund, it said.

O'Reilly's lawyer Michael Cush sought a six-month stay on the judgment's registration and execution to allow completion of a sale of unsecured assets and Justice Peter Kelly is to rule on the request on Friday, media reported.

The 78-year-old lives in the Bahamas but was in Ireland for the court case, according to the reports.

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O'Reilly, a former Ireland and British & Irish Lions rugby player lost a battle for control of Independent News & Media, which invested in the New Zealand Herald and New Zealand radio assets via APN News & Media, while suffering losses on investments including Waterford Wedgewood.

His Castlemartin estate and other property assets are on the market and he sold down below a 5 percent stake in INM in May.