Jump to content

 

 

Ex-Rangers administrators David Whitehouse and Paul Clark in £21m settlement


Recommended Posts

5 hours ago, the gunslinger said:

if they are found to have screwed up an administration I do hope their reputation is tarnished accordingly. I doubt it mind you. 

Their reputation is already tarnished. The Rangers administration was a farce from start to finish.

Link to post
Share on other sites

"We're Poileas Alba, son, and we've not had our herrings."

 

Rangers police ‘had no idea how to tackle finance crime’

Marc Horne

Saturday August 14 2021, 12.01am, The Times

Football

 

 

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/rangers-police-had-no-idea-how-to-tackle-finance-crime-gxc2g5z5m

 

Police resorted to “thuggish, Life on Mars” tactics during the ill-fated investigation into the takeover of Rangers FC because they were poorly equipped to tackle the complexities of financial crime, it has been claimed.

More than £30 million has already been paid out to settle claims made by businessmen who were wrongfully arrested and faced “malicious prosecution” for their role in the Ibrox club’s financial collapse and subsequent sale.

The final cost to the taxpayer is expected to rise significantly with Duff & Phelps, an international financial consultancy firm, seeking up to £120 million for reputational damage sustained when employees were arrested without probable cause.

 

An independent public inquiry has been commissioned but theories are already circulating as to why the investigation went so badly wrong.

 

A number of sources suggest that Frank Mulholland, then the lord advocate, demanded action after watching a 2012 BBC Scotland documentary called The Men Who Sold the Jerseys, which billed itself as disclosing “the inside story of the scandal which brought Rangers to its knees”.

 

The task of proving that criminality had cast a shadow over the Ibrox club’s sale lay with Detective Chief Inspector Jim Robertson and his team.

Russell Findlay, the former crime reporter turned Conservative MSP, has questioned whether he was the right man for the job. He said his view had been formed following discussions with David Whitehouse, a former Rangers administrator, who together with colleague Paul Clark secured more than £20 million in damages from the Crown Office for wrongful arrest.

“Robertson speaks to Whitehouse knowing nothing about the world of finance and the language that is used within it,” Findlay said. “It was a complex fraud investigation and he did not appear to be qualified to conduct it.

“This was meant to be a textbook, modern criminal investigation, but the evidence-gathering techniques used were from the CID in the 1970s.”

 

One individual who has been involved with the case since its inception suggested the national force was ill-equipped to pursue such a complex inquiry. “It has become abundantly clear that nobody in Scotland has the required level of expertise to deal with these kinds of issues,” he said.

“The only police force in the UK that does is the City of London Police.

The officers involved, feeling completely out of their depth, resorted to interview tactics that were completely old-school, straight out of Taggart or Life on Mars. They appeared to think that by acting thuggish these wealthy, comfortable men would crack and spill their guts. Of course, that never happened.”

 

The anachronistic nature of the investigation was suggested in court testimony given by Philip Duffy, a special adviser with Duff & Phelps. Duffy claimed Robertson had told him that the “whole basis” for the arrests involving his colleagues was evidence presented in the BBC documentary.

He also alleged the detective started chanting a football song loudly during his third interview in a police station in London.

 

Paul Smith, another Duff & Phelps employee, described Robertson’s interviewing technique as aggressive. “He said: ‘I need for you to tell me about your involvement . . . and if you don’t you and your mates are going to prison for the next ten years.’ It came as a complete shock.”

 

A source close to Whitehouse said his ordeal, after he was arrested in the early hours at his home in Cheshire in 2014, appeared designed to weaken him psychologically. “Whitehouse was driven slowly up to Glasgow in the back of a car, stopping numerous times, so they would arrive after 5pm by which time the courts were all shut so he had to be held in police detention throughout the entire weekend,” he said. “The whole thing was a fishing exercise. The police had nothing substantial but they were determined to make him crack. A decision appeared to be taken somewhere that heavy-handed tactics were to be used.”

Whitehouse and his arrested colleagues say they were left in cells for days without a mattress and with lights on throughout the night. They were checked on hourly.

Findlay added: “Whitehouse was put in Helen Street police station, which is used for detaining terrorist suspects. He was told his family were in danger, the inference being that UVF hardcore, loyalist Rangers types weren’t happy with him.”

In court Robertson denied chanting The Billy Boys, a Rangers song with sectarian lyrics, but said he may have “referenced” it while in the company of Duffy.

 

Jack Irvine, a crisis management executive, who represents Charles Green — the former Rangers chief executive who this week accepted an out-of-court settlement of £6.4 million for also being wrongly prosecuted — also expressed grave reservations about the handling of the case. He says Green’s safety was put at risk when he was confronted by Rangers supporters after he appeared at Glasgow sheriff court in 2015.

“There was an agreement that he would be taken out the back door for his safety but that was overruled and he was made to walk through the front door,” he said. “The crowd rushed forward and he nearly got killed.”

 

Whitehouse and Clark were arrested in 2014 but the charges were dropped. They secured an apology from James Wolffe, the lord advocate who replaced Mulholland, for a “very serious failure in the system of prosecution”.

Craig Whyte, who bought Rangers for £1 from David Murray in May 2011, was cleared of two charges after a seven-week trial in 2017.

 

The Court of Session paved the way for significant compensation settlements when it ruled in 2019 that the lord advocate did not have immunity from claims of malicious prosecution.

 

Earlier this year Lord Mulholland, who is now a High Court judge, hit back at “false and scandalous” attacks over his role in the episode amid sustained pressure on him to step down.

 

The Crown Office has said it was committed to “further public accountability and a process of inquiry once all litigation has concluded”.

 

Police Scotland pointed to a statement made by Iain Livingstone, the chief constable, who said: “Policing deals with challenging and complex matters, at all times with the aim of improving the lives of the public. Where we do not get everything right, reparations are dealt with on a case-by-case basis and with a view to securing fairness and best value to the public purse. Lessons have been learned and organisational improvements made.”

 

Comments for this article have been turned off

 

I don't know why this piece has appeared, today; it seems odd, as it does not refer to or report on any current legal action(s).

 

I could suggest, however, that it is clear, from the opinions reported, that fall guys -DC I Jim Robertson and his team-  are being lined up to take the blame, prior to any Inquiry. 

 

 

Edited by Uilleam
Link to post
Share on other sites

LEADING ARTICLE

Blame Game

Failed Rangers case is another costly scandal for which no one seems to be accountable

Saturday August 14 2021, 12.01am, The Times

 

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/blame-game-vrz2b3bgf

 

The malicious prosecution of Paul Clark and David Whitehouse, the Duff & Phelps administrators investigated and charged following the collapse of Rangers FC, is already one of the most expensive legal scandals in Scottish history. The two men have thus far received £21 million in compensation following the Crown Office’s admission they should never have been prosecuted and earlier this week Charles Green, the former Rangers chairman, accepted a £6 million settlement from the Crown in regard to his own wrongful prosecution. The bill for what James Wolffe, the former lord advocate, accepted was “a very serious failure” by the Crown Office is already more than £30 million and set to rise still further.

Now Duff & Phelps has launched an action against the Crown seeking reparations for what the firm argues is the reputational damage it has suffered. If successful, the action could see the final cost increase to £200 million. That is an eye-watering sum, the consequences of a series of staggering misjudgements on the part of prosecutors.

The Scottish government has promised a public inquiry into the affair but this cannot begin until such time as the continuing court actions have been settled. The Conservative Party has demanded that the judge leading the inquiry should come from outwith Scotland. That is, in part, a reflection of the extent to which many senior figures in the Scottish legal establishment are connected to the saga. Dorothy Bain, the current lord advocate, has recused herself from the cases, having previously advised Duff & Phelps. Meanwhile, Frank Mulholland, who presided over the prosecution while he was lord advocate, is now a Court of Session judge himself, adding force to the suggestion that an inquiry should be led by a truly independent figure, unconnected to any of the parties involved.

At this stage, however, no one has been held responsible for the malicious and unfounded prosecutions.

This lack of accountability is disconcertingly familiar.

 

An inquiry into the Edinburgh tram debacle — in which the project cost twice its initial £350 million budget, was finished years late, and delivered a network significantly smaller than initially planned — was established in 2014. It has still not reported. The inquiry itself has cost more than £10 million. By the time its work is completed, almost all those involved in a spectacularly mismanaged project will have moved on. The opportunity for true accountability will have been lost.

 

In similar fashion, the continuing saga of the Scottish government’s inability to deliver new vessels for CalMac, the national operator of passenger and vehicle ferries along the west coast, rumbles on with neither an end or any accountability in sight. Two new ferries will, at best, enter service five years later than planned and will cost the public purse at least more than twice the original £97 million fixed-price contract. No institution or individuals have yet accepted responsibility for such an abject failure. A public inquiry into how this project has been so mismanaged is increasingly necessary even if it is also likely to prove too little, too late.

Better late than never, however. These scandals reveal alarming — and highly expensive — shortcomings that should alarm politicians and voters alike. One such fiasco might be unfortunate; multiple scandals of this sort amount to something much worse than mere carelessness.

Link to post
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

"Annual accounts released by the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) show that £35 million has been spent on the (Rangers) case so far, with millions more being earmarked for future payments."

" ' In 2020-21 we have charged £27.9 million (2019-20: £12.6 million) as expenditure in relation to the various cases associated with this.' ”

 

Actually, if we do the sums, it seems that the public purse coughed £35.3M to claimants, and £5.2M, presumably in fees, disbursements, expenses, and like sundries to others. 

And there is more to come more. 

 

I wonder if the promised, inevitably eye wateringly costly, Enquiry will conclude (should we live so long), that 8 titles and a gimme was worth it. 

Or will it take its line from Holyrood's Heid Hobbit, and declare that

"Och well, these things happen."

 

 

Botched Rangers prosecution has cost taxpayers £35m so far

Marc Horne

Tuesday October 19 2021, 12.01am, The Times

 

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/botched-rangers-prosecution-has-cost-taxpayers-35m-so-far-0n36jbl53

 

Tens of millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money has been paid out by the prosecution service over botched cases related to the takeover of Rangers FC.

Annual accounts released by the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) show that £35 million has been spent on the case so far, with millions more being earmarked for future payments.

A series of successful compensation claims have been made by businessmen who faced “malicious prosecution” over for their role in the Ibrox club’s financial collapse and subsequent sale.

The final cost to the taxpayer is expected to rise significantly, with Duff & Phelps, an international financial consultancy company, seeking up to £120 million for reputational damage sustained when employees were arrested without probable cause.

Russell Findlay, a Scottish Conservative MSP, said: “It is astonishing that unknown sums of taxpayers’ money are being diverted from frontline public services to pay for the Crown Office’s malicious prosecution scandal. It appears no one yet knows how many tens of millions of pounds this will cost.”

 

Last year David Whitehouse and Paul Clark, who were appointed as administrators for Rangers FC in 2012, agreed an out-of-court settlement after launching a £20.8 million compensation claim. The pair, who worked for Duff & Phelps, were arrested in 2014 but the charges were dropped.

They secured an apology from James Wolffe QC, who was then the lord advocate, for a “very serious failure in the system of prosecution”.

In August, it was announced that Charles Green, the former Rangers chief executive, had also won £6.3 million plus costs after bringing a £20 million claim against the lord advocate.

Craig Whyte, who bought Rangers for £1 from David Murray in May 2011, was cleared of two charges after a seven-week trial in 2017.

 

The Court of Session ruled in 2019 that the lord advocate did not have immunity from claims of malicious prosecution, upending an area of the law that was largely taken for granted for 60 years.

 

The COPFS accounts state: “We have been involved in civil litigation brought against the lord advocate by individuals prosecuted in connection with the acquisition and administration of Rangers Football Club. Some cases were resolved, with sums paid to pursuers as at September 2021 totalling £35.3 million, and other cases remain before the court. In 2020-21 we have charged £27.9 million (2019-20: £12.6 million) as expenditure in relation to the various cases associated with this.”

In 2018/19, the year before money started being set aside for Rangers cases, these so-called losses and special payments totalled £229,000.

 

The Scottish government has agreed to hold a judge-led inquiry into the episode once all legal proceedings have concluded. The Crown Office said it was not in a position to speculate about any further costs. It said: “The Crown will support public accountability and a process of inquiry once related litigation has concluded.”

Link to post
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

Remember this?

Merely another SNP vanity project?

 

Failed prosecutions at Rangers cost £40m

Mark Macaskill

Sunday December 19 2021, 12.01am, The Sunday Times

 

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/failed-prosecutions-at-rangers-cost-40m-lqxx8ngp6

 

Ministers have been accused of “throwing away” a “gobsmacking” sum of money as it emerged that wrongful prosecutions in a fraud inquiry at Rangers cost taxpayers almost £40 million.

Huge payouts have been awarded to several individuals involved in the administration and acquisition of the club.

Administrators David Whitehouse and Paul Clark were arrested in 2014, though the Crown Office later dropped charges and admitted their prosecutions were “malicious”. The lord advocate also admitted that Charles Green and Imran Ahmad should never have been prosecuted, with Green receiving over £6 million in compensation plus costs.

 

The Scottish government has promised an inquiry into the wrongful prosecutions once outstanding legal proceedings have concluded.

 

Liam McArthur MSP, the Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesman, said: “This is a gobsmacking sum of money for the government to have thrown away. This is money that could have been spent on tackling the obscene case backlog in our court system or getting thousands of children involved in grassroots sports. We need to see progress on a full, independent and judge-led inquiry into this scandal.”

 

The Scottish government’s consolidated accounts last week showed civil litigation brought against the lord advocate by individuals prosecuted in connection with the acquisition and administration of Rangers had cost £39.9 million.

 

Conservative MSP Russell Findlay told the Daily Record newspaper: “It’s outrageous that taxpayers continue to be hit in the pocket by the Rangers malicious prosecutions scandal. The SNP government needs to be open and honest about how many millions of pounds have been lost from public funds.

“While ministers agreed to our calls for a public inquiry, they can’t use that as an excuse to keep people in the dark in the meantime, while the bill continues to spiral.”

A spokesman for the Crown Office said: “The previous lord advocate committed the Crown to support a judge-led inquiry once all litigation is over and apologised for the cost to the public purse. There are long-standing and robust processes in place to minimise the possibility that wrongful prosecutions are brought.

“We have strengthened these through case management panels which provide additional scrutiny and direction from senior prosecutors.”

Football

Link to post
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Uilleam said:

Remember this?

Merely another SNP vanity project?

 

Failed prosecutions at Rangers cost £40m

Mark Macaskill

Sunday December 19 2021, 12.01am, The Sunday Times

 

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/failed-prosecutions-at-rangers-cost-40m-lqxx8ngp6

 

Ministers have been accused of “throwing away” a “gobsmacking” sum of money as it emerged that wrongful prosecutions in a fraud inquiry at Rangers cost taxpayers almost £40 million.

Huge payouts have been awarded to several individuals involved in the administration and acquisition of the club.

Administrators David Whitehouse and Paul Clark were arrested in 2014, though the Crown Office later dropped charges and admitted their prosecutions were “malicious”. The lord advocate also admitted that Charles Green and Imran Ahmad should never have been prosecuted, with Green receiving over £6 million in compensation plus costs.

 

The Scottish government has promised an inquiry into the wrongful prosecutions once outstanding legal proceedings have concluded.

 

Liam McArthur MSP, the Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesman, said: “This is a gobsmacking sum of money for the government to have thrown away. This is money that could have been spent on tackling the obscene case backlog in our court system or getting thousands of children involved in grassroots sports. We need to see progress on a full, independent and judge-led inquiry into this scandal.”

 

The Scottish government’s consolidated accounts last week showed civil litigation brought against the lord advocate by individuals prosecuted in connection with the acquisition and administration of Rangers had cost £39.9 million.

 

Conservative MSP Russell Findlay told the Daily Record newspaper: “It’s outrageous that taxpayers continue to be hit in the pocket by the Rangers malicious prosecutions scandal. The SNP government needs to be open and honest about how many millions of pounds have been lost from public funds.

“While ministers agreed to our calls for a public inquiry, they can’t use that as an excuse to keep people in the dark in the meantime, while the bill continues to spiral.”

A spokesman for the Crown Office said: “The previous lord advocate committed the Crown to support a judge-led inquiry once all litigation is over and apologised for the cost to the public purse. There are long-standing and robust processes in place to minimise the possibility that wrongful prosecutions are brought.

“We have strengthened these through case management panels which provide additional scrutiny and direction from senior prosecutors.”

Football

It helps secure the catholic vote doesn't matter what it costs 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.