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  1. THE tax office has been criticised after saying it cannot give the cost of its five-year chase of *Rangers in one of the biggest tax claims it has ever pursued. Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs has said it would cost too much to find out the costs. The development has been described as "extraordinary" by Rangers fan groups which have accused HMRC of wasting public money in its "witch-hunt" in pursuit of a "phantom tax debt". HMRC has confirmed it will contest the decision of an upper-tier tax tribunal to uphold an earlier ruling on what is known as the Big Tax Case. That ruling said Rangers' use of employee benefit trust (EBT) loans to players and other staff was legal, and payments were not taxable, as Sir David Murray's Murray International Holdings, which formerly owned Rangers, has maintained. But the tax office is known to want to pursue the club as a matter of principle, and there is a *procedural hearing on its latest appeal on February 3. Many believe fear of the tax case led to Lloyds Banking Group *insisting £18 million in club debts were cleared, leading to the sale to Craig Whyte, liquidation, and eventually Rangers playing in the bottom tier of the Scottish Football League. If a fresh HMRC appeal succeeds, it will have no bearing on today's Rangers but fans have called for a Government inquiry into HMRC's handling of the case. Chris Graham, of the Union of Fans, the Rangers supporters *coalition, said of the HMRC response to queries over the case's cost: "This is extraordinary. Lawyers are *meticulous about things like that, they clock all the time they spend on a particular client. "There are question marks over why they are continuing to pursue this when we know they have been offered to settle." When asked what the costs were to date of pursuing the tax case HMRC, a representative said: "HMRC holds information that falls within the scope of your request. However, we estimate that it would exceed the FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) cost limit to deal with it." That limit, he said, was the cost of one person working for three-and-a-half days. He added: "Normally, HMRC would explore with you how you might be able to narrow or refine your request so that it did not exceed the FOIA cost limit. However, in this case, I cannot see any scope for doing this. "Even if we had been able to find and extract all the information in the scope of your request, we would never release anything which could be linked to an identifiable person; be that an individual, company or any other entity." HMRC says EBTs were used by more than 5000 UK firms, including football clubs in England. The Rangers case was seen as a way for the tax office to claw back many millions of pounds from their use. http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/taxman-will-not-reveal-cost-of-rangers-case.26228807
  2. FORMER Rangers owner Sir David Murray and other directors will face no further action over the liquidation of the club's operating company, it has emerged. Former Rangers owner Craig Whyte is the the only former Ibrox executive to face legal moves to ban him as a director over the company's financial meltdown. Mr Whyte was banned from being a company director for 15 years in September after a judge heard his conduct in dealing with Rangers was "shocking and reprehensible". Whyte was previously banned from being a director for seven years. A second ban was sought by UK Business Secretary Vince Cable after Rangers' liquidation in 2012 and the subsequent liquidation of Whyte's firm, Tixway. The role played by all board directors of the club in the three years prior to the administration in of Rangers Football Club plc was looked at by the Insolvency Service's Investigations & Enforcement Directorate. The conduct of Sir David Murray, Rangers legend John Greig, former chief executive Martin Bain, former director Dave King and chairman Alistair Johnston all came under the microscope - but it is understood no further action is to be taken against anyone else. The Insolvency Service had two years from the point of insolvency in February 14, 2012 to start proceedings. But action has only been progressed against Mr Whyte over that period. The legal move to disqualify Mr Whyte came after a confidential report was submitted to the Department for Business Innovation and Skills by the Insolvency Service's investigators within six months of the club's operating company going into administration. The Secretary of State then decided it was in the public interest to seek a disqualification order over Craig Whyte only. Action can be taken against directors if their conduct has not been satisfactory leading to the disqualification of directors for periods of between two and 15 years. After the two years has expired, disqualification proceedings can only then be made against further individuals with a rare special application to the court and agency insiders say there has to be a "strong argument". However it is understood that there no such application has been made. That means that Mr Whyte is the only executive to face action over conduct from the liquidation of RFC 2012 plc, the new name given to the original operating company Rangers Football Club plc. Mr Whyte, who took over Sir David Murray's majority shareholding on May 6, 2011, was in 2000 disqualified to act as a director of for seven years. The investigators examined the £9 million PAYE and VAT debt to the taxman amassed when the oldco under Craig Whyte's leadership went into administration. Insolvency experts also said directors can be found guilty of misfeasance by giving ownership to someone who was not a fit and proper person. Mr Whyte bought Sir David Murray's majority shareholding in Rangers in May 2011, raised £24 million through selling off the rights to three years of supporters' season ticket money to London-based Ticketus to help complete his £1 share purchase agreement take*over of Rangers and pay off the club's £18m debt with Lloyds Banking Group. An independent Rangers board committee set up to review takeover offers, delayed Mr Whyte's buyout and expressed concern over "a lack of clarity" over the new owner's financial muscle, hours after he had completed his buyout. The committee was led by chairman Alistair Johnston, who was removed from the board later along with Paul Murray, who had launched a late rival takeover deal. The following October Rangers' non-executive directors, John Greig and John McClelland, who were members of the independent board, resigned from their posts at Ibrox saying that they had been isolated following Whyte's takeover. Mr Whyte was given the maximum ban possible in September following a petition raised on behalf of UK Business Secretary Vince Cable after the operating company went into liquidation. Lord Tyre said in a full judgment that Mr Whyte's conduct of the business was "characterised by dishonesty" in a case that "can be regarded as quite out of the ordinary". He said the Ticketus deal funded his acquisition of the club while failing to inform the members of Rangers' independent board committee who were tasked with negotiating the sale of the company. Lord Tyre said Mr Whyte "misrepresented" to them that the funds for purchase of the company were to be provided from his own resources and from the commercial activities of his British Virgin Islands- based Liberty Capital Limited firm. http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/h...gers.114970599
  3. International Football Club plc ("Rangers" or the "Company") Scottish Professional Football League Limited ("SPFL") Claim. The board of the SPFL has determined that Rangers Football Club Limited (the "Club") is liable to pay the EBT Commission fine of £250,000 levied on RFC 2012 PLC (previously The Rangers Football Club plc) (in liquidation) The SPFL has also decided that this sum will be recovered from the Club by the SPFL withholding broadcasting money and other sums due to the Club but which are paid in the first instance to the SPFL. An appeal has been lodged with the Judicial Panel of the Scottish FA which has confirmed that the decision of the SPFL is suspended pending the outcome of the appeal subject to the SPFL's right to object. The Board is advised that the sum is not due to SPFL and the appeal will be pursued vigorously.
  4. Reading McMurdos Blog today, even he knows Ashley will not invest. ''Rangers are sick at heart. The answer is a strong leader but there is no-one on the horizon who fills that role. Everyone involved is hanging on to their own sphere of power and influence at the club. There is no Willie Waddell, no Bill Struth or Jock Wallace to rally the Ibrox battallions and have them face the same way instead of train their guns at each other. Yes, there is Mike Ashley. I am confident that he will step forward and provide both leadership and funding to steer Rangers away from the rocks and back to ruling the seas. But in all honesty I have to say that the margins are so fine at this very critical juncture that he might do so just too late to prevent a shipwreck. And let there be no doubt – what’s left of Scottish football will drown in the wake." https://billmcmurdo.wordpress.com
  5. At a RFC plc Board meeting the matter of a repayment of funds to Ticketus came up in relation to the transfer of Jelavic. Donald Muir took a great interest in the deal and spent a lot of time to ensure he fully understood it. Subsequently Whyte's interest stepped up.
  6. Some meat on the bones of yesterday's court appearance... http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/news/6101587/Cash-n-grab.html
  7. http://news.stv.tv/west-central/299623-four-men-detained-after-police-probe-into-sale-of-rangers-in-2012/ I'd like to remind people of their legal obligations in speculating over individuals and alleged criminal behaviour.
  8. I speculated that this was worth a thread on its own. Apologies if not, admin....merge it with Whyte Arrest warrant. However, it is a different revelation (though it may be connected, of course): "In a further development, The Daily Telegraph understands that while Wallace and Nash were still in their posts, documents related to the 2012 share issue were passed to the Serious Fraud Office for investigation. The SFO had no comment to make." It is tagged on here; http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/rangers/11231964/Former-Rangers-owner-Craig-Whyte-issued-with-arrest-warrant-as-four-others-are-detained-by-police.html
  9. THE Crown Office will today issue a warrant for the arrest of disgraced former Rangers owner Craig Whyte, the Daily Record can exclusively reveal. Whyte is wanted in connection with alleged fraud over his purchase of the Ibrox club in 2011. The sensational news comes after it was revealed that police forces in England, acting on warrants from Police Scotland, made dawn arrests today in connection with a long-running inquiry into Rangers. Four men were arrested at addresses in Thames Valley, Surrey and Cheshire. The first of the four is Paul Clark, London managing director of former Rangers adminstrators Duff & Phelps. The other three are former Duff & Phelps north of England managing director David Whitehouse, David Greer, a former partner in the business, and Gary Withey, a solicitor who worked with Whyte’s law firm Collyer Bristow. The arrests came at 6am today. Whyte, who has a flat in Monaco, is believed to be out of the country. It is thought the allegations over which the men have been detained centre on claims that Grier and Whyte were known to each other before Duff & Phelps were appointed as Whyte’s choice of administrators for Rangers in 2012. HMRC had at first opposed Whyte’s choice of administrators. Whyte bought the club from Sir David Murray in 2011 for £1 promising to wipe Rangers’ £18 million debt to Lloyds Banking Group. It later emerged he had sold future season ticket sales to London firm Ticketus to finance the deal. In 2013 financial industry regulators cleared Duff & Phelps of wrongdoing over the Rangers’ administration, though they said the company had left itself open to criticism. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/sc...-crown-4628861
  10. Aberdeen have agreed an investment deal that will wipe out the club's debts. As the Dons released their annual accounts, it was revealed their net debt of £14.49m will be cleared if the restructuring plans are approved. Willie Donald and his wife Elaine, who own the Stonehaven-based engineering company WM Donald, will become shareholders in the club. The Pittodrie outfit hope to see the plans given the go-ahead at next month's AGM. Aberdeen chairman Stewart Milne told BBC Scotland earlier this year that he remained optimistic that the club could soon be in a "debt-free position," as they target new training facilities and a new stadium. In the annual club accounts, Aberdeen revealed turnover rose from £7.85m to £11.158m last season with wages increasing from £5.256m to £6.084m. The club say the wages increase is a result of higher bonus payments. Milne told the club website: "The period covered in this report has seen a significant change in the fortunes at Aberdeen given the team's success in lifting the League Cup." It was also confirmed that if restructuring plans are approved, Aberdeen FC Community Trust will also receive a "sizeable shareholding". On the restructuring plans, Milne said: "The negotiations have been ongoing for a number of months now and these arrangements will, I believe, be transformational for the club. "The club are indebted to Willie and Elaine for the role they have played in this. If the final steps are approved at the AGM we will have a strong balance sheet and the debt servicing burden will be removed, allowing us to drive forward on training facilities and the plans for the new stadium with much greater confidence in our ability to raise the additional investment needed." Willie Donald said: "Our family recognises that we have been fortunate to have grown our business in a city and region that has benefitted from the impact of the energy sector over the last 37 years. "We decided some time ago that we wished to give something back to the community, we see the football club as a vital and central part of the community, and indeed the whole North East of Scotland and see this investment as an excellent opportunity to deliver our objective." As part of the restructuring plan, the net debt of the club will reduce by £14.49m and its share capital and reserves will rise by the same amount. Debt of £4.42m owed to the Stewart Milne Group will be converted to equity. SMG shareholding in the club will rise to around 43% but only up to 29.9% of this would be voting rights. Aberdeen Asset Management will convert their remaining debt to equity and Willie and Elaine Donald will end up with a shareholding of around 20%. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/30016970
  11. THE WAR is over. The retailer has won. This morning Graham Wallace will be fired from his position as Rangers chief 
executive and this crisis-ravaged club will belong lock, stock and smoking barrel to Mike Ashley. Quite what Ashley has planned for it is still a matter of conjecture but the ruthless manner in which he went about last week’s power grab certainly suggests he wants it badly and also sees a way to make a killing by rolling his tanks into Glasgow. He now has security over two 
of the club’s major assets, the 
Albion car park and Edmiston House, and when his placemen arrive in the boardroom this week he’ll have grabbed this club firmly 
by the throat. As with everything Rangers, Ashley’s arrival on the scene will be spun in a variety of ways. The dark arts were evidenced 
over the weekend when it was leaked that, without his intervention, this basketcase would have gone bust within 48 hours. There were even muffled whispers from the shadowy sidelines Ashley had in fact ‘saved the club’ but the very notion the Newcastle United chairman had ridden to Rangers rescue in some sort of philanthropic or heroic act is completely absurd. In many ways, what actually went on amid increasingly frantic 
discussions on Thursday and Friday was a throwback to May 2011 when Sir David Murray invited Craig Whyte to trigger this omnishambles and set in action the catastrophic chain of events that has now led to Ashley’s increased involvement. That deal was a great bit of 
business for Whyte and for Lloyds Bank in particular – the £18million they recouped from the sale remains the outstanding trade of the last three and a half chaotic years – but it was a spectacularly awful one for the Ibrox club. Similarly, by taking control of Rangers for the price of a £2m loan, every penny of which will be paid back, Ashley has pulled off a serious coup in more ways than one. This is why he is known as the biggest beast in the jungle but even the Newcastle owner must be laughing up the sleeve of his safari suit at the way in which he managed to pull this one off. It was typically bold and eye poppingly aggressive and it included issuing the remnants of the Rangers board with threats of legal action both collectively and individually, should they turn him down in favour of a £3m loan from Brian Kennedy. Each of these directors was warned of potentially devastating repercussions should Ashley not get his way and as a result Rangers is his now to do with as he wishes. And all for less than the cost of a Sports Direct poly bag. It was an extraordinary stunt and it’s no wonder Sale Sharks owner Kennedy left Glasgow on Saturday still unsure as to how on earth the dysfunctional Rangers board – a collection of directors who have run the business into the ground – could allow it to happen in spite of his impassioned pleas. The farce began with the rejection of Dave King’s £16m bailout offer by the mysterious bloc of shareholders whose 26 per cent voting rights are represented by Sandy Easdale. On Thursday CEO Wallace, who knew his £300,000-a-year neck was now well and truly on the line, reached out to Kennedy and pleaded with him to make a counter offer. Kennedy worked through the night with his legal team to come up with his £3m offer, dependent only on him being allowed to place one man on the current board. He flew to Glasgow at lunchtime on Friday in the hope of getting the deal done. Kennedy was wasting his jet fuel. Not one of these directors was even at Ibrox on the day it was determined Ashley should be handed the keys. The fact all these discussions were held via conference call, underlines how little feel for the club these men have. Wallace headed for a beach in Greece despite being urged by at least two key protagonists to 
postpone his holiday for 24 hours. Finance director Philip Nash went one better by resigning and washing his hands of the entire Ashley v Kennedy showdown. That Nash threw in the towel is an indication he suspected the game was up and that another director, Laxey’s lackey Norman Crighton, had jumped camps at the last minute. Crighton had voiced his concern at Ashley’s move and had even said the Cockney must be stopped ‘at all costs’ but he performed a 180-degree turn at the last minute to leave Kennedy’s proposal in tatters. Chairman David Somers is another who may have cause to be persecuted by his own conscience. At least Nash had the principle to resign from his £1,000-a-day post. While Wallace was clinging on for dear life for his pay-off, Nash wanted no part of it and this included telling Ashley’s people he was unwilling to work for their man in the event he was successful. Having previously called for the removal of Nash and Walllace, Ashley had a change of heart. It’s understood he wanted Nash on board after crediting him with making £5m worth of cuts since February. One of those cuts was to a contract worth in excess of £100,000-a-year to Ashley’s own PR firm Keith Bishop Associates. This agreement was done as part of the £1 stadium naming rights deal Ashley agreed with Charles Green and which was signed off by Imran Ahmad – who then sued Rangers for £300,000 in bonuses for all of his good work. Deals like these are precisely why Rangers should brace itself for the full impact of Ashley’s arrival. He already pockets 49 per cent of all income from merchandise sales but may think this arrangement can be tweaked and improved in his favour. With two of his men on the board, a compliant chairman and confirmed allies in James Easdale and Crighton, he can do pretty much as he pleases. The only comfort in any of this for the Rangers supporters is to be found in the depth of Ashley’s pockets. He will not allow this club to go under, that much is certain. But from here on in Rangers will be run his way and for his benefit. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/opinion/sport/keith-jackson-mike-ashleys-rangers-4515761
  12. ...the Ibrox throne is big enough for Mike Ashley and Dave King. AS King and Ashley continue to vie for control at Rangers, KEITH insists it may be in both men's interests to discover a common ground that incorporates the interests of the club and its fans. THEIR tanks have rumbled into Edmiston Drive, ready for the climactic Rangers shootout. But before Mike Ashley and Dave King begin blowing each other to bits outside the Big Hoose, perhaps it might make more sense for them to find a better way. Maybe, before the guns start blazing, there is a chance for them to discover common ground. Of course, that would require a bit of common sense and where this club is concerned there is seldom any place for sound logic. But let’s indulge ourselves for a moment in any case and pretend that the two men, who seem so willing to go to war over Rangers, may still be capable of some eleventh-hour reason. Ask yourself this. If you were Ashley why on earth wouldn’t you want King to take control? Those closest to the Sports Direct boss – and even those Newcastle fans who can’t stand the sight of him – all agree that his primary focus is on protecting and expanding his bargain-basement retail business. Which makes perfect sense. Okay, so Slazenger polo shirts and laceless Lonsdale trainers might not be everyone’s giant novelty mug of tea but Ashley’s firm has always been more Buroo-lander than Zoolander. It’s a high street jumble sale and it’s made the man a fortune. This real-life Derek Trotter is a genuine billionaire. Not like the last one who, for all anyone knows – including Glasgow’s finest for that matter – may be currently strolling around some town centre in Panama dressed in Lee Cooper and Le Coq Sportif. He always did have a bulging eye for a bargain. But be that as it may, Ashley deserves to be taken a great deal more seriously. Which is precisely why now might be the ideal time for King to sit him down for a chat, assuming of course that he really is serious about handing over so much of his children’s inheritance. King has not always convinced and not just because of the 41 criminal convictions for stiffing the tax man which have stained his name in South Africa. His PR has been poorly thought out and his strategy over the last 12 months impossible to fathom as he has tip-toed around the edges of this farrago without ever looking prepared to get his feet wet or his hands dirty. But finally he has waded back in, promising an initial £16million bailout and more millions to follow. For that reason alone he deserves to be taken seriously, even by those who continue to doubt him. If Ashley counts himself among those cynics, what would be the harm in asking to see the colour of his money? Because if it really is the case Ashley is interested only in what is best for his own business, there is no reason for this pair to remain hostile over the running of Rangers. Yes, in an ideal world, King may wish to walk into Ibrox on day one and rip up the retail contract Ashley is apparently so determined to protect. This seven-year kit deal, of course, was gifted to him by Charles Green and has been described by those who have seen it as a ludicrously generous and one-sided agreement. Green later wasted a small fortune of Rangers money on legal fees in a failed attempt to have it annulled but the consensus is that this contract is watertight. In other words, Rangers have already sold the jerseys to Ashley and there is nothing King or anyone else can do about it, even if it means the loss of millions of pounds. And this is where logic ought to kick in because if Ashley wants to keep coining it in from shirts and merchandise then surely King’s arrival as a potential saviour stands to make him even richer? King, after all, is perhaps the one man capable not only of uniting a fractured Rangers support but also prepared to throw good money after bad in the reconstruction of a club which continues to hang by the thinnest of threads. If indeed there is enough cash left in the bank to cover this month’s payday then November’s could be a killer. But only in this omnishambles could a business that is wheezing and gasping for breath continue to keep a £30m life-saving injection so stubbornly at arm’s length. King wants to save them. But he can’t get his money bags across the front step. And, yes, logic dictates that Ashley must see the sheer lunacy in this. Over the past few months around 15,000 Rangers fans have gone missing from Ibrox. The numbers are so large that they have blown a hole in Graham Wallace’s attempts to keep the business afloat. And there is a danger many more thousands will follow if Ashley guns King down in the battle for control, while also boycotting his stores. However, if King was to walk back in, flanked by fellow lifelong supporters such as Paul Murray and George Letham, then it is almost certain business will begin to boom again at the turnstiles and in the club stores which Ashley also now has firmly in his grasp. King plans to plough £8m into the coffers with Murray, Letham and a group of wealthy fans cobbling enough together to match him pound for pound. Straight off the bat, that’s £16m that Ashley doesn’t need to bother looking for down the back of his office sofa. There will be more to come as King intends to invest his whole £30m in returning his club to a fit and competitive state and to restore a stadium which, much like the team, is in a state of decay. This is King’s manifesto and so long as he can convince Ashley he is for real and that the money is there and good to go, then both Rangers and Sports Direct stand to benefit from it hugely. So tell me, what possible logic is there in Ashley blowing this man away? The answer is, there isn’t any. Or at least, none that is obvious from the outside of this wretched mess. Which means there must be something hidden from view, perhaps even something deeply suspicious behind the naked act of aggression earlier this week which saw Ashley set his sights on Wallace and Philip Nash, the men trying to facilitate King and his consortium. What else is there to hide here? Surely nothing that stretches back to when Ashley climbed into bed with Green in the first instance and began this merciless pumping of Ibrox? Come to think of it, who on earth did bring these two together? He already owns the strips and the shops which sell them. He bought the stadium’s naming rights for a quid. And had Wallace not grown a pair last month then he would have owned the club’s badges by now as well. But it’s hard to see the value in any of it if Ashley’s power grab does indeed drive more and more of the customer base away. In fact, it will cost him millions of pounds in emergency loans just to continue to light up an increasingly empty stadium. If he’s not careful he could end up sitting alone in the directors’ box with only his drinking buddies, Sandy and James Easdale for company and if that thought doesn’t terrify him then it should. This club is broken and it needs fixed, not by a bunch of Trotters Independent Traders but by those who genuinely care for it. If Ashley cannot, or will not, see the logic in that then it will indeed be time to clamber back into the tanks. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/keith-jackson-another-rangers-war-4411056
  13. ...has stopped supporting his three children. SPEAKING after Whyte was handed a 15-year director ban, Hugh Martin revealed his daughter Kim was "not getting a penny" from the former Ibrox owner for herself or their children. CRAIG Whyte ’s father-in-law yesterday revealed the disgraced businessman has stopped supporting his three children. Hugh Martin, father of Whyte’s estranged wife Kim, spoke after t he former Ibrox owner was banned from being a UK company director for 15 years . He said the ban was “irrelevant” as Whyte was no longer in Britain and may never return. Kim and Hugh have no idea where the liar is living, with Whyte claiming to have been in the US, France and even Albania in recent months. And Hugh said Kim was “not getting a penny” from Whyte for herself or the kids. Whyte, 43, was banned on Tuesday for the maximum 15 years after a court heard his dealings with Rangers were “shocking and reprehensible”. He and Kim bought Castle Grant, near Grantown-on-Spey , for £800,000 in 2006 – with a 110 per cent mortgage. Kim moved out after the marriage fell apart and now lives in England, where the children are at school. Whyte failed to pay the £7000-a-month mortgage for two years and the castle was repossessed in April. He also had a flat in Monaco – but the court last week heard his place of residence was unknown. Hugh, 73, of Giffnock, Glasgow, said Whyte’s director ban was “surely irrelevant because he is not in the UK”. He added: “Even my daughter does not know where he is. She has no clue – no phone number, no email, nothing. “She is getting not a penny – it’s horrendous. He will not support his own children one penny, let alone Kim. “She does not know where he is. She did say he had been in Albania. Don’t ask me why, I have no idea. He gets around. “I don’t think he is in Monaco. Kim thinks he may have given up the flat there but it’s possible he may be there. “He likes to live first class but he does not pay the bills for it. “He was staying in America some months ago at the Beverley Hills hotel in Hollywood. I hope they got paid.” Kim married Whyte in Florida in 2000 and they lived in Monaco and Costa Rica before moving back to Scotland in 2006. They split in 2010. Former steel company boss Hugh said he understood Whyte last had contact with Kim “over a month ago”. He added: “The last time he had the children was in Paris, but he sent them home unaccompanied. “For some reason – whether it’s the police, Inland Revenue, Customs, I don’t know – I don’t think he’s coming back. “There is only one word I can think of to describe Craig Whyte – and that is despicable. I have no idea how he survives, I just do not know.” At the Court of Session last week, Judge Lord Tyre said the case for disqualifying Whyte was “overwhelming”. He added: “He deliberately placed his own interests before those of the company.” Whyte had earlier been banned from being a company director for seven years . Business Secretary Vince Cable applied to have Whyte, 43, banned again after Rangers were liquidated in 2012. Whyte did not appear to defend the action after his lawyers withdrew. Whyte bought Rangers for £1 after agreeing a deal with previous owner Sir David Murray to repay a club debt of £18million to Lloyds Banking Group. He was asked how he proposed to fund the deal, and an email sent on his behalf indicated the source of the money was Liberty Capital, a British Virgin Islands firm owned by Whyte. But he’d been negotiating with Ticketus to provide the funds in exchange for three years of Rangers season ticket sales. He repeatedly lied about the deal after it was exposed, and put the club in administration in 2012. Hugh said: “Ticketus took action against him, he was found guilty, appealed, and was found guilty again. But when they got there, the money had gone.” The Court of Session heard officials couldn’t find Whyte to serve notice of the hearing, and we were unable to contact him for comment last week. When we rang a number previously linked to his Monaco flat, a man with a Scots accent paused briefly and then said we had the wrong number. There was no trace of Whyte at Glasgow offices once listed as the address for companies linked to him. A staff member in a nearby office told us she had no idea what had happened to the companies, and added: “You’re not the first person who’s been here looking for them.” http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/craig-whytes-father-in-law-tells-how-4380772
  14. A judge who banned former Rangers owner Craig Whyte from being a company director for 15 years said his conduct of the business was "characterised by dishonesty". Lord Tyre gave a decision to impose the maximum ban on Whyte from the bench earlier in the week at the Court of Session in Edinburgh after Business Secretary Vince Cable brought a petition. His written opinion was issued today. Whyte, 43, became a director at Rangers in 2011 but it went into administration the following year before being wound up. Lord Tyre said: "Immediately upon his appointment as a director or Rangers the respondent (Whyte) caused Rangers to enter into the Ticketus agreement, for the sole or main purpose of facilitating his acquisition of Rangers by providing finance which was lent by Rangers to Wavetower, which in turn used it to repay Rangers' external debt, notably to Lloyds Banking Group." "In effect, a significant proportion to Rangers' prospective income for the next three years was used to pay the bank and thus to fund the respondent's acquisition of the club." "On the basis of the material placed before me, it seems to me that there is a strongly arguable case that this amounted to financial assistance prohibited by section 678 of the Companies Act 2006, and accordingly constituted an offence," said the judge. Lord Tyre added: "In any event I am satisfied that the Ticketus agreement was entered into by Rangers, under the direction of the respondent, for the benefit of the respondent and not the company, and accordingly constituted a deliberate breach of his fiduciary duty as a director." "The fact that this was done, knowingly, in breach of the express terms of the share purchase agreement enhances the reprehensible nature of the respondent's actings," he said. It was argued that Whyte deliberately and dishonestly concealed the Ticketus deal, under which it got the right to sell three years season tickets for £24m, from other board members until its existence was found out by the company's financial controller from an independent source. Lord Tyre said: "I am satisfied on the evidence that the allegation of dishonesty is established." Whyte had told the independent board committee at Rangers that funding of the deal would come from him and an email was sent indicating that a British Vigin Island company owned by him, Liberty Capital, was a source of funding, the court was told. He said Whyte held no board meetings and provided no information to other directors over the company's financial affairs, making it impossible for them to carry out their own duties as directors. It was also alleged that there was a failure by Whyte to exercise rights, granted by Wavetower to Rangers at the time of the share purchase, to receive payment on demand of sums to meet playing squad costs and a sum due to HM Revenue and Customs, dubbed the Small Tax Case. Lord Tyre said: "In connection with this aspect there is again an element of dishonesty on the part of the respondent, in that a letter sent on his behalf in January 2012 contained certain untrue statements concerning funds available to Rangers." A further issue was the failure of Rangers under Whyte's ownership to meet its obligations to HMRC over PAYE, national insurance and VAT. Lord Tyre said: "Acting to the exclusion of other directors, the respondent caused Rangers to stop making payment when due in respect of these liabilities from September 7 2011." The commercial court judge: "By February 2012, when HMRC presented its petition for an administration order, a sum of around £10.5m had accrued in respect of unpaid tax and unapplied interest." "Through his actings at the time of and after acquisition of Rangers, the respondent demonstrated a reckless disregard for the interests of the company to which he owed fiduciary duties," he said. "His conduct of the business was characterised by dishonesty, in relation to disclosure of the true source of the funds used to purchase the company and repay the bank debt, and by wilful disregard for his duties to the company and to the other members of the board," said the judge. He said that in acquiring Rangers and a subsequent sale of shares in Arsenal "he placed his own interests before those of the company". "He knowingly permitted the company to trade using money owed to HMRC, " said Lord Tyre. The judge said that Whyte has had also shown "a wilful disregard" for the duties of a director over record keeping and co-operation with the liquidator of a second company Tixway. Lord Tyre said that little was known about Tixway, which went into liquidation in 2012, where Whyte was appointed as a director in 2008 following the ending of a previous seven-year ban as a director. "It is clear from Tixway's bank statements that the company held funds. Entries in those statements strongly suggest that some of those funds were applied to meet personal expenditure of the respondent," he said "Tixway is estimated to have a deficiency of liabilities over assets of around £3m. In the absence of adequate records it is impossible to know how this deficit accumulated," he said. Payments from a bank account included £395,991 to American Express and £414 to a butcher in Grantown on Spey, in Morayshire. Lord Tyre said: "In my assessment, the conduct of the respondent in the present case consists of a combination of dishonesty, disregard for the interests of companies to which he owed duties and of the creditors of those companies, use of Crown debts to finance trade, misappropriation of company funds (at least in the case of Tixway) for private purposes, and wilful breach of a director's administrative duties, the effect of all of which is that the case can be regarded as quite out of the ordinary." Whyte, formerly of Castle Grant, Grantown on Spey, and RueDe Tenao, Monaco, was not represented at the hearing where he was banned. An amendment to the court document was granted to state that his current place of residence is unknown. http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/u/judge-craig-whyte-was-characterised-by-dishonesty-at-rangers.1412337598
  15. Former Rangers owner Craig Whyte has been banned from being a company director for 15 years. The 43-year-old was handed the maximum ban possible after a judge heard his conduct in dealing with Rangers was "shocking and reprehensible". Whyte was previously banned from being a director for seven years. A second ban was sought by UK Business Secretary Vince Cable after Rangers' liquidation in 2012 and the subsequent liquidation of Whyte's firm, Tixway. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-29429752#?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
  16. I wonder if anyone knows what the current setup is regarding the contracts for catering and programmes. I know Azure have got a contract for catering, do they pay a licence fee and then they take all the match day takings, or do they pay a lower fee and the club gets a slice of the till receipts? Same with the programmes, does the club get a fixed fee so it doesn't matter how many they sell or is the clubs income from programme sales dependant on the number sold? Anyone?
  17. Suspect the Daily Record will make for interesting reading tomorrow. Will make us even more frustrated though. #justicefortherangerssupport Glad to see what looks like some things HMRC would rather stay unsaid are going to finally come to light. A couple of tweets tonight. Story here: http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/ex-rangers-owner-craig-whyte-being-3992415
  18. Some thoughts on yesterday's HMRC appeal result: http://www.gersnet.co.uk/index.php/latest-news/256-rangers-v-hmrc-a-pyrrhic-victory
  19. "The Union of Fans were approached approximately two weeks ago, on behalf of the PLC board, to once again try to reach agreement on a binding legal guarantee over the club's assets. These discussions continued and various drafts were passed back and forth. The statement that the board released yesterday was rejected by UoF last week due to the fact that it does not give a binding guarantee over Ibrox and that several misleading statements are made within it. Despite us negotiating in good faith, the board has seen fit to release the statement anyway. We were seeking written guarantees over both Ibrox and Murray Park. The board removed all reference to Murray Park. This was not an oversight - they are explicitly refusing to include Murray Park in any undertaking. We believe this is because the board are actively looking to sell this vital club asset due to their failure to so far secure enough funds to see the club through the current season. Their statement is also disingenuous and is a slap in the face for the thousands of fans who have given up long cherished seats attempting to get this board to guarantee the future of our clubÂ’s home. Despite their attempts to claim otherwise, it has never been their position to give any kind of legally binding guarantee over Ibrox and they still have not done so. This most recent statement, on behalf of the so called 'Football Board' - not the PLC board - has crucially not been released to the stock exchange and therefore reduces the chance of shareholder action should they go back on their word. The board claim that they are "committed to protecting the assets of the club". Currently the club has four main assets. Two of those, Edmiston House and the Albion Car Park, have already been used as security for crisis loans due to financial mismanagement. The board continues to refuse to give any legally binding safeguard over Ibrox and we believe they are actively looking at a sale and leaseback of Murray Park - a vital asset if we are ever to properly develop our own talent. They have shown no commitment to protecting the club's assets. This board has committed to raising funds from existing investors through a new share issue in September. We do not believe that they have support from those investors for what is essentially money to keep the lights on and we would ask Graham Wallace to urgently clarify the position on new money coming into the club. The board have lost just under half of the club's season ticket holders due to a complete lack of ability to build trust. Even if those fans were to buy season tickets now, the club still does not have the funds to complete the season and yet the board keeps us in the dark over how they will address this shortfall. We ask them to stop the half-truths, spin and smoke and mirrors and tell fans the truth."
  20. Along with the UTT appeal rumours, I'd fancy a few people will not be sitting comfortably over the coming monhts... http://www.followfollow.com/news/tmnw/rangers_creditors_win_24m_settlement_from_law_firm_836024/index.shtml
  21. He lost the vote but I'm surprised that seems to have been the end of it? I don't think much of him but it seems odd he has gone completely quiet. Am I missing something?
  22. The board of Rangers (the “Board”) can confirm that approximately 17,000 season tickets have been renewed to date for the Club's forthcoming SPFL Championship season. This level of renewals reduces the potential requirement for short term financing as highlighted in the Business Review Summary published on 25 April 2014 particularly given the updated season ticket pricing structure for the 2014/15 campaign. Applications for new season ticket purchases opened on Monday and sales of season tickets are continuing. The Club very much looks forward to welcoming more supporters back to Ibrox for what promises to be an exciting league competition. The Board believes that whilst this level of support reduces the potential requirement for short-term financing the Board also notes the strategic objectives that it identified in the Business Review Summary published on 25 April 2014 and the related funding requirements. The Board continues to evaluate its plans in this regard and will update the market in due course. http://www.rangers.co.uk/news/headlines/item/7059-season-ticket-sales
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