Three former senior bankers have been imprisoned for their roles in hiding billions in losses at the defunct Anglo Irish Bank, the biggest accounting fraud in Irish corporate history.

Judge Martin Nolan told the trio — former Anglo executives Willie McAteer and John Bowe and former Irish Life and Permanent chief executive Denis Casey — they were guilty of committing "sham transactions" designed to hide 7.2 billion euros ($8 billion) in deposit losses from shareholders in Anglo's 2008 earnings report.

Casey's bank supplied funds that Anglo falsely claimed as new customer deposits. The money was registered on Anglo's books, then secretly transferred back.

Casey received a prison sentence of 2 years, 9 months. McAteer received 3 ½ years, Bowe two years. All were convicted last month of conspiracy to defraud.