I will do my best in three minutes. On the question relating to the basis for the figures, it is estimated that it could be in the region of 3,000 to 5,000 cases. We do not know exactly how many people will lodge claims. We anticipate that it will be in the region of 3,000 but it could increase to 5,000. People are talking about higher figures but we do not think that in monetary terms it will reach anything like €1 billion. We still think the original estimate will not be too far out, but it depends on the nature of the large claims. Some of these cases are very serious.
The indemnity was worked out in February. On 20 February the Minister made a statement. All those involved, including the Departments of Education and Science and Finance, and the Attorney General's office were aware of the terms of the indemnity. As far as Arthur Cox is concerned, the initial draft agreement was proposed by CORI in 2001. It was not accepted at the time. In January 2002, the Minister made the agreement in principle on the amount of the congregations' contribution towards the redress schemes. Officials of the Departments of Finance, Education and Science and the Attorney General's office set out to hammer out the details of the agreement. The Arthur Cox document was used as a starting point but was substantially revised to accommodate the requirements of the State.
I have replied to most of the other issues to which the Deputy referred, but he asked me about the money aspects. Agreement was reached that the congregations would contribute €128 million towards the redress scheme. As I said yesterday, there was no exact scientific formula for reaching a figure for the congregations' contribution. However, a number of agreements were made. One was that €41 million would be in cash, of which just over €34 million has been lodged to date. It was intended by CORI that €12.7 million would be placed in an educational trust, but this was not accepted by the Department and a minimum cash amount of €41 million was later agreed. There was €77 million in property transfers.
The State can refuse to accept any property offered and can seek alternative properties. The property issues are still under discussion with the representatives of CORI, and any shortfall in property must be made up by cash. CORI originally wanted to go back ten years, which the Minister did not accept. Following intensive negotiations, a date in May was agreed, and I apologised on behalf of the Government to those people affected over the years. A sum of €10 million was put forward for counselling. There was a commitment to continue this service for as long as required, even after the €10 million was spent.
The legal indemnity covers only those cases which could be heard by the redress board but where the victim has opted instead for a court hearing.