The Lost Voice of the Armageddon Virus

Since I have lost my voice this week to the Armageddon virus, we decided to do a mini, written version of TWM for your pleasure….

 

 

 

In Armageddon Lala Land (© S. Regan), it’s all falling apart in a major borefest.

The explosive first thirteen minutes of the match involving the two top teams in the country were just a dream from which we all sadly awoke – although in my experience one usually gets roused from a dream just as the good bit begins!

Meanwhile nobody in Airdrie, Alloa, Annan, Brechin, Cowdenbeath, Dundee, Forfar, Greenock, Kirkcaldy, Montrose, Peterhead, or East Kilbride noticed anything exciting about the playoffs – and to make matters worse, folk in Cowdenbeath & EK, Forfar & Peterhead, Brechin & Alloa and Dundee & Falkirk have more of this trouser-removal process to endure later this week.

The facts, despite the SFA, SPFL and MSM trying to undersell our game here in Scotland, tell a different story. The playoff system – after close finishes in all the leagues, top and bottom, is pure drama.

There will be tears and laughter in unequal measure of course. Already, Raith Rovers, the great love of our old friend the late Turnbull Hutton have joined Ayr United and Stenhousemuir in relegation. The same fate may yet befall two from Inverness, Motherwell and Hamilton in the top league. The Blue Brazil themselves, Cowdenbeath could face banishment from the SPFL altogether if they cannot beat the upwardly East Kilbride next week.

The truth is, that keeping expectations in a realistic check, the game in Scotland is in better shape than it has been for decades. The delusional, acquisitional David Murray-led charge to financial oblivion has ended. Clubs, well most of them anyway, are living within their means. Thankfully the banks, enablers of the financial doping of the last thirty years, are now playing the role of limiting the excesses of overspending that clubs previously enjoyed.

Doubts over the distribution of the available income streams aside, there is level playing field on which Scottish clubs play, and over the last few years, a host of clubs, including Inverness, Ross County, St Mirren, Kilmarnock and St Johnstone have achieved historic successes. Aberdeen have re-emerged as the second most consistent side in the country after several years of consistency that only Champions Celtic have bettered.

In fact the quality of attacking play – if not defending- on show at Pittodrie on Friday evening would have graced any top flight game in England. It is now to Celtic and Aberdeen as well as our other clubs in European competition, Rangers and St Johnstone, to demonstrate that Scottish football may well be the poor relations in the UK, but is no backwater hangout for hillbillies and banjo players

Celtic’s dominance of course is the elephant in the room. It’s a big cuddly green and white elephant of course if you are a Celtic fan, but phase two of post Armageddon Scotland will hopefully involve a meaningful challenge at the very top over the next few years.


 

Craig Whyte
Whisky Baron?

The Craig Whyte trial continued in Glasgow last week. The former Rangers chairman faces charges including one of ‘pretending’ to have funds to facilitate the ‘purchase’ of ‘Rangers’.

Things the court has heard from testimony up to now include;

  • the claim that Ex-Rangers chief executive Martin Bain got a £360k bonus for the sale of the club,
  • that Gary Withey, Craig Whyte’s lawyer through the acquisition of Rangers, thought that Whyte was a member of the Whyte & McKay Whisky company!
  • that Ally McCoist had a contract with a substantial payoff clause if he was not chosen to succeed Walter Smith.
  • Rangers already owed £6m to Ticketus at the time Whyte took over
  • that David Murray had a deal with Lloyds: If he sold Rangers by a certain date, he would be able to regain ownership of MIM

 

Gary Withey, told the court that he thought Murray was desperate to get the deal over the line, that Murray’s team didn’t care where Whyte’s money had come from, and that in his opinion they knew that the deal was financed via Ticketus – this after the court had heard from other witnesses that Lloyd’s bank had threatened to withdraw Rangers’ credit and finance facilities if the board blocked the sale.

Significantly for matters outwith the confines of the case – and this has been incredibly under-reported by the main stream media – David Murray also told the court earlier that he had used EBT’s in order to get better players for Rangers than they could otherwise afford, re-igniting social media exchanges over the validity of William Nimmo-Smith’s report into Rangers use of EBT’s.

You may remember that Nimmo-Smith himself considered that Rangers had gained no sporting advantage by their use of the scheme – a conclusion diametrically at variance with Murray’s – the man who operated the scheme to achieve exactly that end.

Nimmo-Smith – Doubts?

If Murray is telling the truth, then it puts Nimmo-Smith’s conclusions in doubt. And even if you leave aside for the moment the amended and extremely creative terms of reference set by Neil Doncaster which effectively excluded the already known to be unlawful DoS EBTs from Nimmo-Smith’s team, the SPL has been shown up as a bit a joke.

Who knew?

 

 

 

Another sensational piece of info the court heard, which again has gone almost completely unreported, was that in an email from Mike McGill of Murray Group, dated 17 March 2011, he says “the (wee tax) case only recently went from a potential liability and had not “crystallised” until recently” – this long before a Euro licence was awarded to Rangers on the basis, according to Stewart Regan, that the bill had “not crystallised” when the licence was awarded.

It may be that that the laws of unintended consequences will prove to be more significant to football than the matter of Craig Whyte’s guilt or innocence.

All of the information on the case is what was said in court. None of it is to be taken as fact. That will be for the courts to decide. What is being reported is what witnesses have said in court. Also, there is a lot of hysteria, a lot of speculation going on in social media and the mainstream media over court proceedings.

Speculating on the innocence or guilt of a defendant, or the honesty of a witness is most definitely contempt of court territory. For obvious legal reasons, SFM wishes to stay on the right side of the law and avoid unnecessary problems with the courts.

But we also want to ensure that we are not party to contaminating people with speculation that may lead a defendant to be being mistakenly convicted or acquitted.

The purpose of a trial is establishing the facts of a case, not to merely validate so-called information or inferences that have been drawn before any legal process has begun. So we are asking everyone at SFM therefore to refrain from posting anything that implies guilt or innocence, truthfulness or untruthfulness, or anything which repeats unsubstantiated rumour.

We may think we know a lot, but it may well be the case as the trial progresses that we discover we knew less than we thought – so please keep that in mind when you post.

 


The news that it seems likely Clint Hill will not be offered a new contract at Rangers saddens me a little. Hill has been a consistent performer this year, playing with an energy, honesty and assuredness that was way in excess of many of his teammates and opponents alike. Hill is clearly not ready to retire, and I hope that he gets another year of football.

It will be interesting to see how many of the players who have been in the headlines this year will be leaving Scottish football. Hill looks to be gone, as does Emerson Hyndman. Will the likes of Moussa Dembele, Kieran Tierney, Scott Sinclair, Barrie McKay, Niall McGinn. A fair chance that some of them will. The challenge for our game is to keep a flow of that kind of talent ongoing. The more successful we are at that, the less resigned we will have to be about losing them.


As the season draws to a close, we still have promotion and relegation playoff battles to enjoy. There is the unresolved matter of ‘Invincible’ status for Celtic in their as yet unbeaten league campaign. We also have a proper showpiece finale to the season in two weeks as Aberdeen and Celtic go head to head in pursuit of the Scottish Cup.

In a few weeks, the transfer window will pique our interest as the off-field wars will be waged – with the added fun of the phantom journos in the MSM bringing us phantom stories of phantom Messis and Ronaldos headed for a hover-pitch near you – and the new season will immediately bring European drama to the door.

Who knows? Maybe the close season will see some proper football administrators brought in to replace the architects of Armageddon, tartan style. Sadly that sounds awfully like a Moonbeam.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big Pink

Big Pink

Big Pink is John Cole; a former schoolteacher based in the West of Scotland, He is also a print and broadcast journalist who is engaged in the running of SFM . Former gigs include Newstalk 106, the Celtic View, and Channel67. A Celtic fan, he is also the voice of our podcast initiative.

621 Comments
  1. Cluster One

    Cluster One


    JOHN CLARKMAY 15, 2017 at 19:56       17 Votes 
    Cluster OneMay 15, 2017 at 18:55‘………. if that is now four who have left, who is still there? ‘_______Companies House records have not yet (7.30 pm today) been updated to show resignation of Houston.
    By my reckoning, there are now only three  directors left- William Cowie , Alex Wilson. and  James Blair (who is  the sole shareholder ( presumably in the name of TRFC) .
    ——————————
    Companies House records may have to be updated again I believe if i’m reading it right William Cowie , Alex Wilson have resigned

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  2. gunnerb


    AULDHEID MAY 16, 2017 at 17:29
    EDIT
     
    “….. I think TRFC will get a licence knock back but it will be in June after list of clubs granted a licence by the SFA is sent to Nyon ” ————————————————–
    In which case what is the point of the SFA having a licensing committee at all? I did ask earlier who are these people and it wasn`t tongue in cheek. I can find nothing on any site to indicate if they are independent professional people from outside of Scottish football or if it is just  the office junior at Hampden!There must be some questions asked if the SFA blithley wave through the application when they are perfectly well aware of the need for proper audited financials to be presented. I hope they are publicly censured, at the very least, by Uefa if this happens.
     

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  3. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    It seems James Blair, who also sits on the PLC board is basically doing what he wants, and the rest are just supposed to do what they are told.

    Quelle Surprise!

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  4. nawlite


    John Clark, I received an immediate auto-response thanking me for my feedback and attaching my submission below it.

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  5. naegreetin


    Re Takeover Appeal Panel vs King

    I have to-day , received an email from the TAP in response to my query to them re the status of their COS action against King – their Secretary advises ” cannot provide any further information (on this case) as the matter remains before the Scottish Courts”

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  6. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    Does anyone know who will be presenting the Scottish Cup to the winning captain later this month ?

    As the SFA has clearly confirmed its tone deafness wrt the ref appointment…

    Is Ogilvie going to be the guest of honour ?
    or [Sir] David Murray ?
    or Lord Nimmo Smith ?

    Would be a nice gesture if one of the remaining Lisbon Lions was to present the trophy, to mark the 50th anniversary of Lisbon. 

    To remind everyone that Scottish football has a rich heritage, regardless of what critics say about the game today. 

    A grateful Scottish FA, acknowledging what a ‘local team’ did to raise the profile of Scottish football globally ?

    Sounds like a crazy idea…but the crazy aspect is that this suggestion – I doubt – would even appear on the radar at Hampden. 

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  7. blu


    STEVIEBCMAY 17, 2017 at 15:34 
    Does anyone know who will be presenting the Scottish Cup to the winning captain later this month ?…
    Would be a nice gesture if one of the remaining Lisbon Lions was to present the trophy, to mark the 50th anniversary of Lisbon. …

    Sounds like a crazy idea…but the crazy aspect is that this suggestion – I doubt – would even appear on the radar at Hampden. 

    Stevie, it just sounds like a Celtic fan’s idea, which it is. There may be some mileage (as you say, to remind people that Scottish football does have some meaningful heritage) in this particular final of having the Aberdeen captain from 1983 and one of Celtic’s fit and able Lions to do the honours for whichever of their teams wins. Better than a sponsor or the current/past president of the SFA.

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  8. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    BLU
    MAY 17, 2017 at 16:09 
    … Stevie, it just sounds like a Celtic fan’s idea, which it is.
    There may be some mileage…in this particular final of having the Aberdeen captain from 1983 and one of Celtic’s fit and able Lions to do the honours for whichever of their teams wins.
    Better than a sponsor or the current/past president of the SFA.
    ===========================================

    Oops! Yes, was wearing my green-tinted specs whilst typing earlier.

    You’ve made a good suggestion and is more equitable  / acceptable [?], you would think…

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  9. Corrupt official

    Corrupt official


        
    STEVIEBCMAY 17, 2017 at 15:34
    Does anyone know who will be presenting the Scottish Cup to the winning captain later this month ?
        ———————————————————————————————————–
     A novel thought Stevie, and not something I had pondered previously. How about the captain of the reigning champions, as there is a sort of symbolism to it, or in the event that the reigning champions are retaining the trophy, the captain of their opponents on the day. . 
        All done with a handshake, a slap on the back, and a smile, 
        True black & white camera corinthian spirit stylee

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  10. upthehoops


    Hats off to Willie Miller on Sportsound tonight for stating it is time for some humility from within Ibrox with a declaration they will live within their means.  Far too many within the media tip toe around this issue and instead talk of the fanciful figures required to get Rangers to where they ‘belong’, without any question of where it is to come from. It’s good to hear such a revered, decorated figure within the game, who is now plying his trade in the media, being willing to call this nonsense out. 

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  11. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    UPTHEHOOPS
    MAY 17, 2017 at 19:42 
    Hats off to Willie Miller on Sportsound…
    ===========================

    And it would be preferable if Willie Miller was appointed the Cup Final ref instead…   19

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  12. John Clark


    Corrupt officialMay 17, 2017 at 18:48
    ‘….All done with a handshake, a slap on the back, and a smile, True black & white camera corinthian spirit style.’
    __________
    On April 29th I had the very great pleasure of spectating at an AFL Rules match btween Brisbane Lions and Port Adelaide, in the ‘Gabba’ Stadium, Brisbane ( the stadium is situated in the district of Woolloongabba, from which it gets ‘Gabba’).
    Having already been to three games, I had enough undertanding of the nature of the game to really enjoy it.

    At the end of the match ( which was won handsomely by Adelaide) , the music that was played was the Adelaide team song!

    When I asked  Brisbane supporters round me, I was told  that it is a long-standing  tradition  that the winning team in any match gets to  belt out their anthem/team /club song at the end of a match if they have won, regardless of whether they are the home or away team!

    I can see that catching on here!!

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  13. Corrupt official

    Corrupt official


    Seems Scottish sheep are harder than Portuguese coos. 14

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  14. John Clark


    Just for the record, ,by the way , I was in Court 4 all day today.

    Not only are reporting restrictions in force, but I was personally reminded of that fact when I was discreetly and kindly approached by a sergeant of police , at the end of the day’s proceedings, who, having  ascertained that I am not  an ‘accredited journalist’  politely asked me to hand over a wee bit of paper on which I had tried to scribble perhaps about twenty words in total, while looking straight ahead and with the paper on the side of my leg! 

    But they don’t miss a thing- ( or somebody shopped me!)

    Happily, I have not been debarred from attending the Court.
    Maybe because what I thought was a ‘note’ proved on inspection to be scarcely more than an unreadable, indecipherable  scribble like those my 4-year old grandweans produce!18

    But, it goes to show that it is not worth  taking a risk:so my lips are sealed!

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  15. John Clark


    STEVIEBCMAY 17, 2017 at 15:34′..Does anyone know who will be presenting the Scottish Cup to the winning captain later this month ?’
    ______________
    I expect that even the numpties on th 6th Floor have arranged for a presentation by somebody or other, so they will know!

    Like Corrupt Official, I have to say that it’s an aspect of things that I have never really thought about. But it is worth thinking about. In terms of sport.

    What does it mean, to win a sporting contest?

    At the simplest level, it means that one competitor ( whether an individual or a team) has by whatever sporting effort and skill and persistence and determination and all the many qualities that sportsmen and sportswomen and sports clubs possess and strive to develop, has won through against other competitors equally dedicated to the sporting ethic.

    Nothing else is of any real relevance[ setting aside financial and drug doping].

    The ‘best’ athlete, the best boxer, darts player, tennis player, cyclist, swimmer, etc etc is, by definition,  recognised as having won through against the opposition, by anyone who understands and accepts what ‘Sporting competition’ means.

    An appreciation of the ‘best’ is not ( ought not to be) a function of partisanship. It is related to fact.

    I would suggest that only true sportspersons , who have themselves reached the highest pinnacle of sporting achievement , should be invited to present sports prizes to winners of sports competitions. I fancy that they appreciate , from personal knowledge and experience, both what it is like to be honoured, and how difficult it is to reach the stage of being honoured.

    And are therefore likely  to be genuinely respectful of the achievements of other sports winners, and honoured to be asked to present , as honoured sportspersons themselves, trophies, winners prizes or whatever, to, for example, the winners of the Scottish Cup.

    An end, therefore, to the ‘great and the good’, or officials or presidents of the SFA, or the wives of such, being the field from which ‘presenters’ of the Scottish Cup are drawn.

    Let’s have the selection made from the  ranks of our sportsmen and women who in their particular sports have been tremendous ambassadors.

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  16. nawlite


    Was driving through West this morning so had to listen to something and put on Talksport with Jim White. It was the usual pish they talk about football – money and why it’s good! However, they took 5 minutes to talk about tennis and the interesting recent announcement about Maria Sharapova not being granted a wild card for the French Open.
    White (and co-host Tony Cascarino) took the view that the big star was being done down and not allowed to get herself back where she belongs – hadn’t she served her time and been punished enough? The expert they had on to discuss it (Barry Cowan, ex-player, now broadcaster) put them in their place by taking the completely opposite view. He gave the true story which was that Sharapova was not in fact being punished by this decision, given that she would still be allowed to play in the tournament but would have to come through qualifiers due to her lack of ranking points earned during her drug ban. He pointed out that the granting of a wild card was a privilege and that competitors found guilty of cheating should not be given such a privilege/advantage. He agreed she had served the allotted punishment and should now be welcomed back, but not allowed any advantage over those competitors who had struggled fairly in her absence to try to make sufficient ranking points to earn that wild card. He actually used the phrase “You need to protect the sport” repeatedly.
    He was pro- the proper use of wild cards e.g. if a top player is out injured for a long period, but not as a ‘reward’ for cheating.
    Interestingly, he commented that Sharapova had already been granted a number of wild cards to smaller WTA/ATP events (which may have led to the expectation of her receiving one for the Grand Slam event) and pointed out that these smaller tournaments need the top players to play in them because otherwise the crowds may not turn up, but he was adamant that the 4 Slams should be different.
    Although the Talksport guys didn’t use phrases like ‘back where she belongs’ or ‘punished enough’, my paraphrasing is accurate enough to show how wrong they are in their need for money to be the driver in sports.
    Apologies if this is off topic, but there were just so many parallels in that 5 minutes with the views/beliefs that led us to where we are with TRFC and the continuity myth. Regrettably, the parallel I’d like to have seen whereby the authorities don’t bow down to the crowd-pleasing star didn’t happen in football! That said, it was good to see that the French Open appears to be standing up for sporting integrity. Barry Cowan believes Wimbledon will follow suit given that they have already announced they will be charging £5 for qualifying matches this year. He believes this means Sharapova will likely be involved. So Wimbledon supporting sporting integrity, but still managing to make a bob or two from it!

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  17. Christyboy

    Christyboy


    Nice one Nawlite, i enjoyed that wee piece. You are now our Scottish Wimbers Monitor….  

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  18. naegreetin


    Re Whyte Trial – reading JD’s tweets from evidence given by buyers , sellers & advisers so far – shark infested waters !

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  19. woodstein

    woodstein


    Attachment

    The truck behind Craig Whyte amused me 10

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  20. Ballyargus

    Ballyargus


    What do you think of this nasty comment by Neil Cameron in the Herald http://www.heraldscotland.com/sport/15293711.Neil_Cameron__Who_in_Scottish_football_is_going_to_hire_John_Hughes_now_/ where he tries to ensure that John Hughes doesn’t get another job.
    I wonder what his agenda is and what JH did to annoy him.

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  21. John Clark


    Just caught my eye:CoS Rolls of Court 18/05/17

    “PROCEDURE ROLL WARNING LIST
    The undernoted causes will be put out on the Procedure Roll in the near future.  Intimation should be given as soon as possible to the Keeper of the Rolls of any cause in this list which has settled, or is likely to settle:-
    1.A346/14 Bett Homes Ltd v David Murray             Gilson Gray LLP   Brodies LLP  Clyde & Co
     2.A184/16 The Rangers Football Club Ltd v Charles Green &cc   Anderson Strathern LLP  Kennedys Scotland Brodies LLP
                                                                                          Balfour + Manson LLP Heggie Alexander Ian Anderson Solicitor
      

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  22. Jingso.Jimsie

    Jingso.Jimsie


    I’m having some difficulty working out what DCK means in his statement today:

    All of our season ticket money will be invested in the football squad as we continue to work towards taking our club back to the very top of Scottish Football.”

    https://rangers.co.uk/news/headlines/chairman-praises-fans-renewals-soar/

    He hopes they sell more than 43k season books & all that money will go towards the playing staff.

    That’s the majority of their annual income. What will then pay other costs?

    Come on, Dave, help us out here…

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  23. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    JINGSO.JIMSIE
    MAY 18, 2017 at 19:10 … 
    I’m having some difficulty working out what DCK means in his statement today…

    ============================

    And I think King has been misquoted;

    “The team didn’t perform to expectation this season but it is important to remember that some targets have been met.
    In particular, getting back into European competition was one of our non-negotiables for this season.”

    Which should have included ;

    “In particular, getting back into European competition was one of our non-negotiables for the SFA this season.”

    14

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  24. Jingso.Jimsie

    Jingso.Jimsie


    On review, DCK’s statement is yet another example of the Chairman of RIFC ‘crossing the line’ & acting as a Director of TRFC.

    See yon SFA, see Fit & Proper 111111

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  25. jimbo

    jimbo


    1616

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  26. easyJambo


    John Clark May 18, 2017 at 18:49
    =================
    The TRFC v Green and co. case is the action about underselling contracts, e.g naming rights. I thought it had been abandoned a couple of months ago, but it seems that it was only an associated claim about disclosure of documents that saw the club back down.

    I’m not sure about the David Murray case either. I would have expected that our similarly named knight of the realm would have his title quoted in any court action had it been the same one.

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  27. easyJambo


    King only commits ST revenues to be spent on the playing squad.  The largest majority of that will be in wages.  This season’s first team wage bill was forecast at £10.3m so not a lot room for manoeuvre in the transfer market beyond that.

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  28. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    If I was a knowledgeable bear, I would be getting increasingly worried – and not just about the standard of the team.

    King has clearly indicated he either doesn’t have the cash – or the will – to finance TRFC, despite his bullish promises a couple of years back.

    The ST monies just buys a bit more time – and only keeps the club treading water, at best.

    So, if/when TRFC goes the same way as RFC, what will happen ?

    The threats of Armageddon, social unrest, clubs going bust etc. were liberally thrown about by the SFA / SPL and of course the SMSM.

    Despite this fear-mongering, the fans didn’t buy it.

    Scottish football survived, and some clubs benefited from the absence of an Ibrox team in the top league.

    If TRFC bites the dust, Regan and Doncaster couldn’t repeat their threats to justify pandering to an Ibrox club/company.

    So how could they justify preferential treatment to even slot ‘RFC v2.0’ into the bottom league – and ahead of more deserving clubs ?  

    Now, everybody knows that an Ibrox club is not an essential requirement for Scottish football.  

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  29. jimbo

    jimbo


    1616161616

    Sorry but I love smileys as you all know!

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  30. John Clark


    easyJamboMay 18, 2017 at 20:30
    ‘…I’m not sure about the David Murray case either. I would have expected that our similarly named knight of the realm would have his title quoted in any court action had it been the same one.’
    _________________
    You’re probably right,eJ.

    I was thinking of a possible connection between  house builder Bett Homes Ltd and Murray Estates, [controlled by former Rangers owner Sir David Murray] which of course ” Plans to build more than 1,300 homes on Edinburgh’s green belt ..” but I’d imagine that any legal action raised by Bett would have been raised against Murray Estates, and not against the individual Murray.

    Mind you, it is a remarkable coincidence that two  David Murrays should appear in the Rolls at the same time!

    On the other legal action, I had thought it must have been quietly settled, with TRFC realising that they really hadn’t a case against Green. A sole director of a company ( and I think Green was that, at the time) must surely be free to arrive at his own view of what might be, in his judgment, an acceptable deal  on merchandising arrangements with a business partner.

    But ,as we see, apparently not!

    ( I hope there is no settlement: I’d like to see the matter played out in Court)

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  31. upthehoops


    EASYJAMBOMAY 18, 2017 at 20:37  
    King only commits ST revenues to be spent on the playing squad.  The largest majority of that will be in wages.  This season’s first team wage bill was forecast at £10.3m so not a lot room for manoeuvre in the transfer market beyond that.

    ————————————-

    It’s more King bluster, to ensure the season tickets are shifted which will keep the wolf from the door to around November. The overpaid failures he already has will still need to be paid. 

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  32. Cluster One

    Cluster One


    JINGSO.JIMSIEMAY 18, 2017 at 19:10       12 Votes 
    I’m having some difficulty working out what DCK means in his statement today:
    “All of our season ticket money will be invested in the football squad as we continue to work towards taking our club back to the very top of Scottish Football.”
    ————————-
    “There will be an opportunity for fans and fan groups to invest in the club in the future and to play an active role in restoring our club to its pre-eminent position in Scottish football.” 16th May 2015
    http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/sport/13308283.Rangers_fans_to_learn_of_Ibrox_investment_plans_in_near_future/
    ———————–
    JINGSO.JIMSIEMAY 18, 2017 at 19:28       13 Votes 
    On review, DCK’s statement is yet another example of the Chairman of RIFC ‘crossing the line’ & acting as a Director of TRFC.
    See yon SFA, see Fit & Proper 
    ——————————
    “Because with my situation, I had given an undertaking to the SFA that I wouldn’t act as a shadow director. So we’ve been very, very precise in making sure I didn’t get involved in the affairs of the club.
    https://stv.tv/sport/football/clubs/rangers/1321018-dave-king-rangers-investment-was-dependent-on-fit-and-proper-approval/

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  33. John Clark


    Cluster OneMay 18, 2017 at 22:28
    ‘… with my situation, I had given an undertaking to the SFA that I wouldn’t act as a shadow director. So we’ve been very, very precise in making sure I didn’t get involved in the affairs of the club.’
    ___________
    And, naturally, our SFA , not averse to lying on its own account, accepted without question an ‘undertaking’ from such an one!

    Apart from that, King’s statement, praising ( with some justification) the loyalty of the basic ‘Rangers’ punter,  seems to me to be pointing up the ‘treachery’ of that cheat of a majority shareholder, who not only sold the actual, physical jerseys, but the whole club, to protect his personal interests.

    That SDM should not have by now  been metaphorically torn to pieces by a raging mob of suckered-by-him loyal fans, is a matter of some wonder.

    But that is for the betrayed fans to deal with.

    It is for us to deal with the SFA, as being  treacherous betrayers of any semblance of integrity in their governance of our game by their failure to deal properly both with the original cheating  ‘Rangers’ and , in my view, with the absurd nonsense spouted by King, chairman of RIFC who tells us that he doesn’t get involved in the affairs of the ersatz Rangers, known as TRFC.

    I am so glad that I am not the son of any of these people.

    I would die of shame.

    Unless, of course, I was a chip off the old block.

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  34. wottpi


    Maybe it is just me but from JD’s tweets I get the impression that when deals worth millions are ongoing there seems to be a lot of ‘hingers on’ sniffing around, trying to get their cut for not doing very much and apparently not having a handle on their brief, such as actually having an easily understood plan of attack for the deal and reading legal documents,  emails and the like!!

    Lord help the country if this is how our business and finance  community goes about negotiating things like Brexit and future trade deals.

    View Comment
  35. easyJambo


    Looks like the Whyte trial may not take as long as forecast.
     
    James Doleman‏ @jamesdoleman
    AD says he should be able to close the Crown case next week, has 8 witnesses left. Court adjourns.

    View Comment
  36. Cluster One

    Cluster One


    The AD: said today to  Phil Betts “Can I make it clear to you, you have immunity, you can’t be prosecuted over this.
    —————
    Is that the same for every crown witness? Or can someone explain what the AD ment by this statement.

    View Comment
  37. StevieBC

    StevieBC


    The Sun:

    “BRUNO’S ON WAY
    Euro 2016 winner Bruno Alves has agreed to become Pedro Caixinha’s first signing as Rangers boss”

    The DR:

    “Rangers target Bruno Alves ‘agrees’ to join Ibrox club this summer”

    Neither article has any quotes from the player, or from his agent – or even from anyone at Ibrox.

    So this ‘story’ of a 35 year-old signing for TRFC…is the usual, lowLevel mince.

    [To be fair; one of the papers did change its headline wording a wee bit – so it wasn’t a straightforward copy/paste job.]

     222222
     

    View Comment
  38. BigGav


    I see that Dave King’s carefully crafted statement from yesterday:
    “All of our season ticket money will be invested in the football squad”

    has been dutifully reported in the Herald and Evening Times by eminent journalist Christopher Jack as:
    “Dave King has vowed to plough all season ticket cash into the transfer kitty in the coming weeks”
    which is not what he said AT ALL.

    I think King’s statement is more notable for what it DOESN’T say – noticeably missing is any promise that additional money will be provided by King and his fellow-directors to fund the expected full-scale squad rebuild.

    Of course, any “journalist” worthy of the name could easily pick up a phone and ask Mr King to explain his statement, but for some reason this never happens…

    View Comment
  39. John Clark


    easyJamboMay 19, 2017 at 15:55’…
    ‘…..Looks like the Whyte trial may not take as long as forecast.’
    ______________
    The original expectation was that the trial might last 12 weeks or so, as I seem to remember.

    If the prosecution finishes next week, I can’t imagine that the defence will need another 5 or 6 weeks after that.

    What is it that causes estimates of duration to be so substantially  inaccurate?  Could there be concessions made, or agreements reached, that mean that the number of witnesses required to give evidence in court is reduced, or some such thing?
    The management of Court business must be a nightmare!

    View Comment
  40. Bogs Dollox


    easyJamboMay 19, 2017 at 15:55 
    Looks like the Whyte trial may not take as long as forecast.   James Doleman‏ @jamesdoleman AD says he should be able to close the Crown case next week, has 8 witnesses left. Court adjourns.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Let’s hope they are honest and truthful in their giving of evidence. That is all justice demands.

    View Comment
  41. John Clark


    BigGavMay 19, 2017 at 23:12
    ‘..Of course, any “journalist” worthy of the name could easily pick up a phone and ask Mr King to explain his statement, but for some reason this never happens…’
    ________
    There’s a PhD ( perhaps not from a Scottish University) waiting for the person who writes the thesis that’s simply begging to be written, on how the media dealt with the ‘saga’.

    It’s a fact that there were/are reporters and editors who,as fans of RFC(IL), clearly make no attempt to be objective in their ‘reporting’ but are happy to propagandise to support the Big Lie,in the cause of continuity ‘Rangers’.

    They are in the majority, unquestionably, and unquestioningly.

    I have to remind myself, though, that Mark Daly did the documentary about EBTs, and very recently Grant Russell tried to get King to answer some questions, but was blanked by King.

    But what has, to my knowledge,never happened is the kind of forensic, in-depth probing and digging to get at the truth, regardless of the powers that be, that is the hallmark of true journalism.

    When you think of how the Watergate guys took on the lying Nixon Whitehouse establishment, you wonder at the weakness and pusillinamity of our media editors.

    Or at their partisanship, which blinds them to the truth, and makes them no more than ‘Lord Haw Haw-like’ propagandists of untruth.

    Football. A sport. And people lie and cheat! And the lying and cheating is endorsed by the ‘governance’ of that sport.

    And by the press.

    Good God almighty, that it should have come to this!

    View Comment
  42. fan of football


    Betts asked about a document showing a £16m loan from Rangers to Wavetower. Says he has never seen it.
    Another nail in the coffin of the BIG LIE.
    Ticketus gives the advance on STs to the CLUB and the CLUB lends it to WAVETOWER ,WAVETOWER were never Liquidated so that only leaves one other lying on the slab 

    View Comment
  43. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    BIGGAVMAY 19, 2017 at 23:12       11 Votes 
    I see that Dave King’s carefully crafted statement from yesterday:“All of our season ticket money will be invested in the football squad”
    has been dutifully reported in the Herald and Evening Times by eminent journalist Christopher Jack as:“Dave King has vowed to plough all season ticket cash into the transfer kitty in the coming weeks”which is not what he said AT ALL.
    I think King’s statement is more notable for what it DOESN’T say – noticeably missing is any promise that additional money will be provided by King and his fellow-directors to fund the expected full-scale squad rebuild.
    Of course, any “journalist” worthy of the name could easily pick up a phone and ask Mr King to explain his statement, but for some reason this never happens…
    _____________

    I have to wonder when the bears (and I include the whole of the SMSM in that group) will notice, and kick up the stink that any rational person/group would, that King’s ST sales pitch ‘investment promise’ has been reduced year on year! It started around the thirty to forty million mark, and has now reached… well, nothing, so, at least, this just might be the first time he hasn’t lied so brazenly (but there will be his traditional lie in there) to the gullible hordes!

    Something else I haven’t seen mentioned is the fact that he is making his latest ‘promise’ while awaiting a CoS hearing, the result of which could see his, and TRFC’s, future in business (here in the UK, at least) brought to a juddering halt! The SMSM don’t seem able to recognise the important questions that need to be asked, let alone answered. At the very least they should be asking him if this latest statement is an indication that he is going to comply with the Takeover Panel’s ruling, or just brazen it out regardless of what it might mean to the football club? Of course, the SMSM are nothing if not consistent in that regard, where they ignore everything that is not good news for the incumbent Ibrox club!

    There’s a court case going on just now that probably wouldn’t be if the SMSM had done their job properly in the past, so, at least they are good for something12

    View Comment
  44. jockybhoy


    Hasn’t Chris Sutton also said Alves is going to Ibrox? He probably was tipped off by someone and obviously King’s statement was well crafted. Annual PR overdrive.
    Remember what they say “loose lips sell tix”

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  45. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    Yesterday James Doleman tweeted the following but there was no indication of any response, and I couldn’t work out the context of what Findlay was refering to. It seems to suggest that the £1.7m of repairs had been carried out but DF might merely have been making the point that, as far as Murray was concerned, all of these things had been taken care of. I wonder if anyone present yesterday can remember the context of the exchange. It seems strange in that any previous reference to the repairs has suggested that they were never carried out (though maybe no one has actually stated it as a fact).

    James tweeted:

    “Findlay “The bank was paid, the stadium was fixed, the tax case was appealed and players were signed.””

    View Comment
  46. easyJambo


    John Clark May 19, 2017 at 23:17
    easyJamboMay 19, 2017 at 15:55’… ‘…..Looks like the Whyte trial may not take as long as forecast.’ ______________ The original expectation was that the trial might last 12 weeks or so, as I seem to remember.
    If the prosecution finishes next week, I can’t imagine that the defence will need another 5 or 6 weeks after that.
    What is it that causes estimates of duration to be so substantially  inaccurate?  Could there be concessions made, or agreements reached, that mean that the number of witnesses required to give evidence in court is reduced, or some such thing? The management of Court business must be a nightmare!
    =======================
    I hope that the trial lasts at least a couple of weeks more, as it would allow me to attend once again.

    The SMSM has speculated previously that Dave King and Alastair Johnston were among those expected to be called as witnesses, but at least in King’s case they have stated that he is no longer required. It is not for me to speculate publicly why the Crown could have have made such a judicious decision, but at least I can still speculate in my own mind.

    View Comment
  47. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    EASYJAMBO
    MAY 20, 2017 at 10:15
    ============================

    Perhaps his evidence was agreed and there was no need for him to appear.

    Alternatively someone else can provide the same evidence he would have and as such he was not required. There is no need to call everyone who speaks to the same thing.

    View Comment
  48. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    ALLYJAMBO
    MAY 20, 2017 at 10:11  
    James tweeted:
    “Findlay “The bank was paid, the stadium was fixed, the tax case was appealed and players were signed.”

    =========================================

    Is he not simply stating that his client did everything he said he was going to do and as such there was no fraud. Basically just putting that in the minds of the Jury.

    I have to say I’ve never really understood what the fraud was anyway.

    View Comment
  49. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    HOMUNCULUSMAY 20, 2017 at 11:18 
    ALLYJAMBOMAY 20, 2017 at 10:11  James tweeted:“Findlay “The bank was paid, the stadium was fixed, the tax case was appealed and players were signed.”
    =========================================
    Is he not simply stating that his client did everything he said he was going to do and as such there was no fraud. Basically just putting that in the minds of the Jury.
    I have to say I’ve never really understood what the fraud was anyway.
    _____________

    That’s more or less what I thought, countering the earlier (unsubstantiated?) suggestions that that part of the deal, at least, hadn’t been met, though I’d like to have a better idea of the context of the exchange, – if it was, indeed, an exchange between counsel and witness, or just something DF threw in to leave some positive impression with the jury.

    View Comment
  50. woodstein

    woodstein


    Homunculus
    May 20, 2017 at 11:18
    The  main parts of the indictment below and the part relating to Fraud.
     
    —————————————————
     
    Extract from Indictment
     
    …you CRAIG THOMAS WHYTE, with intent to acquire a majority and controlling stake in the shareholding of the Club from Murray[……
     
    ….did pretend to the Officers of Murray namely Sir David Murray, that you, Wavetower Limited and Liberty Capital Limited individually or collectively had funds available to make all the payments stipulated 
     
     
    ] (iii)  did thereby induce the said Officers of Murray to negotiate, enter into and conclude the said Share Purchase Agreement dated 6 May 2011 between Murray, Wavetower Limited and Liberty Capital Limited and to transfer 92,842,388 of ordinary shares being a majority and controlling stake in the shareholding in the Club, from Murray to Wavetower Limited and did thus obtain through Wavetower Limited 92,842,388 ordinary shares being a majority and controlling stake in the shareholding of the Club by fraud;
     
     
    002) you CRAIG THOMAS WHYTE, being an officer of a company, namely a director of The Rangers Football Club plc, a company incorporated under the Companies Acts […..
     ] authorise or permit the Club unlawfully to give financial assistance directly or indirectly for the purpose of reducing or discharging the said liability of Wavetower to the Bank of Scotland plc, and at the time said financial assistance was given the Club in which the shares had been acquired was a public company, in that upon appointment as director you did cause the Club to enter into a loan agreement with Wavetower and, in implementation of the said loan agreement, to lend £18,000,000 to Wavetower, which in turn allowed Wavetower to meet its liability incurred to the Bank of Scotland plc for the purpose of the said acquisition: CONTRARY to Sections 678(3) and 680(1) and (2) of the Companies Act 2006;
     

    View Comment
  51. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    As far as I understand it his arrangement with Ticketus was that he could sell them the tickets once he had control of the club.

    His deal with the club / bank was that he could buy the shares if he had the funds to buy the debt from Lloyds (plus the other stuff).

    The money was placed into an escrow account and was to be released when the conditions were all met. That is not uncommon.

    It strikes me that was little different to the way I bought my house, the lawyer held the money from the building society until the conditions were met, then paid it to the seller.

    If Murray was aware of Ticketus being involved then it looks even less like a fraud. Findlay seems to be demonstrating that is the case, using witnesses called by the Crown.

    And as I have said several times, who was the victim, because I don’t see one. Other than possibly Ticketus who have sued Whyte already. 

    View Comment
  52. woodstein

    woodstein


    Homunculus
    May 20, 2017 at 13:13
     
    If Murray was aware of Ticketus being involved then it looks even less like a fraud.04
    ———————————————————————————–
    I would add” more than”06

    View Comment
  53. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    WOODSTEINMAY 20, 2017 at 12:58

    I think, from reading the extract of the indictment you posted, and from what we have read of the case so far, a clearer picture of what the crown are actually basing their case on is becoming apparent. What we have heard in court up to now relates, I think, to the first two charges, while, I suspect, the final, and main charge on which they hope to prove substantial (to the level of going to court) fraud has only been touched upon, so far, in that Whyte not only concealed (it is claimed) the source of his funds, but actually used what was the club’s own money, and not his own, to buy the company. I’m not sure that this, in itself, is fraud/illegal, but perhaps it is if deception is used. That might be even more fraudulent if the purchaser of a majority share in a business uses the businesses money in this way by transferring the funds without board approval and by his signature, alone.

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  54. John Clark


    HomunculusMay 20, 2017 at 13:13
    ‘..As far as I understand it his arrangement with Ticketus was that he could sell them the tickets once he had control of the club.’
    ___________
    ‘Once he had control’
    But, as I understand it, the charge is that the accused allegedly did not have control at the time he sold the rights to season tickets.
    It is that undestanding that has caused me once or twice to speculate idly about whether the ‘sale’ of the club could be declared null and void, if the charge gainst the accused were to be proven.

    As for ‘victims’, there are the minority shareholders who opposed the sale, some of whom at least might wish to argue that their rights had been illegally trampled over, if the sale were indeed proven to have been founded on a fraud.

    View Comment
  55. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    JOHN CLARK
    MAY 20, 2017 at 14:5
    =================================

    Again it’s my understanding that he did.

    Ticketus put the money into an escrow account and it wasn’t released util he bought David Murray’s shares.

    So Rangers did not sell the season tickets until Whyte owned the majority of shares in it. Had he not got that control then the money would simply have gone back to Ticketus. That’s the point of using escrow.

    He agreed to sell them before he had control, but the deal couldn’t go through until he got that control.

    I’m not really sure how the 13% or so were victims, how did they lose out. Murray was perfectly entitled to sell his shares, the club was perfectly entitled to sell it’s tickets. 

    View Comment
  56. jimbo

    jimbo


    Had a wee chuckle at Graham Spiers on Off the Ball there.  Talking about sycophancy in Scottish football reporting.  He spoke about an interview with Brendan Rodgers yesterday, 7 of them, lasted about half an hour.  He (Graham) reckoned they asked good relevant questions.  (I paraphrase) I mean we  didn’t ask him “just how good are you Brendan?”  a la Jim White.  Good to hear White getting mocked by a fellow ‘journalist’.

    Latest – Alloa 4 Brechin 3  (agg 4-4)  Wish I had known it was on BBC Alba

    View Comment
  57. jimbo

    jimbo


    Alloa v Brechin game now in extra time.  These souls will tire.  They both look very young teams.

    View Comment
  58. jimbo

    jimbo


    As I suspected a scrappy ET.  Penalties now.

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  59. jimbo

    jimbo


    Brechin won on penalties.

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  60. John Clark


    HomunculusMay 20, 2017 at 17:04
    ‘…He agreed to sell them before he had control, but the deal couldn’t go through until he got that control’
    _________
    When I bought my first house, Homunculus, I borrowed the money from a building society. I did not attempt to ‘sell’ the house or any of its assets to the building society as if I already owned it, and then use that money to buy it, telling the owner that I had my own money to spend on the purchase.

    Even if I had thought that that might be a wizard wheeze, I’m sure that my building society would have wanted some kind of proof that I already had the legal ownership of the house or assets that I was trying to sell them. They would quite rightly have knocked me back if all I had to offer was my promise that, if they gave  me the money to buy the house, I would sell to them the house or whatever assets that it had that they wanted.

    And I would not have been surprised if they had called the cops to tell them I was trying to sell something that did not belong to me.

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  61. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    JOHN CLARK
    MAY 20, 2017 at 20:04
    ==============================

    Only guessing here as I don’t know your personal circumstances but this is normally how it goes.

    When you bought your first house the mortgage (loan) was secured against that house. How could you secure a loan against an asset you didn’t own yet.

    What actually happened was that the building society gave the money to your lawyer who put it their client account. The building society agreed with the lawyer that he could release the money to the seller as soon as you got the house and the loan was then secured against that asset. However if that didn’t happen then the lawyer would then give them their money back.

    I’m not a fan of argument by analogy btw, but if that’s what you want to do I see little or no difference with Whyte, Murray and the lawyer used to hold the Ticketus money until he bought the shares. 

    One more thing though, it wasn’t Whyte who sold the season tickets, it was Rangers, it was the club. I think people forget that sometimes. 

    (Once again apologies to lawyers, surveyors, bean counters and other rogues who take offence to that not being right. You people really need to lighten up.)

    View Comment
  62. Cluster One

    Cluster One


    Watched the Dundee utd v Falkirk game last night……I enjoyed it

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  63. John Clark


    HomunculusMay 20, 2017 at 20:47
    “……One more thing though, it wasn’t Whyte who sold the season tickets, it was Rangers, it was the club. I think people forget that sometimes.”
    _______________
    If the majority shareholder  at the time the season book rights were  sold was CW, then I share your puzzlement as to what the  allegation/charge  of fraud is based upon.

    View Comment
  64. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    John and Homunculus, an interesting discussion, but difficult to discuss without, perhaps, straying into forbidden territory, or, at least, giving the mods cause for concern, but if I can give my tuppence worth, might I suggest that the house purchase analogy is not a good one, as no money was ‘borrowed’ to buy Rangers.

    I’ll try a different analogy.

    A picture house, very popular in it’s town, has been run by the same family since first opening, but they have fallen on hard times and, rather than see the cinema go bust, have decided to sell to someone they believe intends to put some of his extensive wealth into saving the picture house he had many a, ahem, fun time in16

    The man, however, isn’t going to use his own money to buy the cinema, he isn’t even going to borrow it, he is, in fact, going to sell future tickets to an online ticket sales company, who, believing the man has sufficient funds to ensure the quality of movies on show are of the best and a full cinema is ensured.

    The vendor family would not have sold the cinema if they knew he didn’t have sufficient personal wealth to keep it going, and they could have sold the cinema to a developer for more or the same money. The ticket sales company wouldn’t have bought the tickets if they’d known the new owner didn’t have the wherewithal to ensure the cinema continued to operate at a near capacity level, either.

    Two out of the three parties have been deceived; but all might have gone well if the movies on show had been a success, and three years later all the tickets have been sold, along with sufficient other tickets to ensure the cinema’s future. No one was hurt by any deception, and they all lived happily ever after.

    OR

    The new owner makes a big mistake in committing to buy big budget movies only for them all to bomb, and the business goes bust!

    Now, the vendors have been deceived into a sale they would not otherwise have made. They are not happy, but didn’t actually make a verifiable financial loss. The ticket company, on the other hand, have lost their investment.

    Have they been deceived, and therefor defrauded? Only a court can decide. I’d imagine, should the case go to court, there would be three charges, the first two relating to the purchase agreement between the purchaser and the vendor, the third, the one involving money lost by one of the parties, is the main charge, though it may well hinge on the first two!

    I’ve deliberately ignored any insolvency/liquidation features and anything else that might be similar to some other imaginary case, but I think that fraud always involves deception, but is only ever noticed should a loss is made.

    View Comment
  65. Cluster One

    Cluster One


    ALLYJAMBOMAY 20, 2017 at 21:48
    OR
    The new owner makes a big mistake in committing to buy big budget movies only for them all to bomb, and the business goes bust!
    Now, the vendors have been deceived into a sale they would not otherwise have made. They are not happy, but didn’t actually make a verifiable financial loss. The ticket company, on the other hand, have lost their investment.
    ————————-
    Did the ticket company who had lost their investment not take the owner to court and didn’t actually make a verifiable financial loss.And the owner told to pay more than £17 million damages
    http://www.scotsman.com/news/uk/craig-whyte-in-court-over-rangers-ticketus-money-1-3659702
    I’M GETING LOST

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  66. Cluster One

    Cluster One


    ALLYJAMBOMAY 20, 2017 at 21:48
    Now, the vendors have been deceived into a sale they would not otherwise have made.But had to make a sale, any kind of sale as the cinema was going down the tubes anyway. They are not happy,how the sale was conducted but happy enough that it was.
    The new owner is not happy as he just later found out there was a big repair bill for the cinema and a giant invoice for the popcorn waiting for him when he walked through the front door.
    Or am i way off track?

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  67. John Clark


    First sensible words I’ve heard from Mrs May:  titles( ‘like what fred goodwin had’) can/should  be stripped from people who have fallen below acceptable standards.

    Any suggestions as to which knight of the realm should join Goodwin? Which deceitful businessman, knighted for his services, deserves to be dishonoured rather than honoured?

    please sir, please sir, I can think of one, wholly contemptible ‘knight’, who is as far removed from knightly qualities as it is possible to be.

    For all his millions, nothing at heart but a despicable common cheat whose golfing score card, if you were playing against him, you would need to have independent verification of.

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  68. woodstein

    woodstein


    Ok I will have a go.
    There are 2 charges according to the indictment.
     
    1 Fraud (pretending to have funds)
    2 Assistance
    From the information so far  the club (shares) were bought for a pound.
    (much has been made of this coin and  how it traversed across the table on the fateful day, and presumably into DM’s pocket),  
    CW now owns  the club?  Offer, Acceptance, and Consideration (1 pound) , All the elements of a legal binding contract it would appear.
    After which the money supplied by Ticketus repays the bank debt,  Assistance?
    According to the  Companies Act 2006,  after reading the pertinent sections  (they are way above my pay grade)  not so sure ( only involved in Insurance case law more than 40 years ago.) 
    mibbies aye, mibbies naw.
     
    PS
    John Clark  May 21, 2017 at 00:4104

    View Comment
  69. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    WOODSTEIN
    MAY 21, 2017 at 01:01
    =========================================

    Just a small point but one that I have always felt was very important.

    As I understand it the debt to Lloyds was not “repaid”, it was bought, by Wavetower (which became The Rangers FC Group Limited) along with the floating charge over it.

    It made Wavetower (which is actually the company which bought the shares) both the major shareholder and the largest secured creditor. 

    In theory if there was an insolvency event then Wavetower would have been paid before anyone else, or would  have been given the assets. It would have controlled the insolvency process due to it’s debt. 

    View Comment
  70. Allyjambo

    Allyjambo


    Cluster OneMay 20, 2017 at 22:16

    CO,
    In my analogy I was trying to avoid too direct a comparison with the case we are discussing and merely trying to show my take on how, by the use of deception, what might ordinarily be a legal transaction, may be deemed to be fraud. I also reckon that there will be many business deals carried out where deception is used by one, or both, of the parties, but both end up reasonably satisfied with the result and so no ‘fraud’ is discovered or even suspected.

    Since writing my analogy, I have come to realise that fraud cases are the opposite of what we might call more normal criminal proceedings, in that, when someone is on trial for bank robbery, we know the crime was committed, so the prosecution must then show, beyond reasonable doubt, that the accused committed the crime. In a fraud case, however, the onus isn’t on the crown to prove ‘whodunnit’, for he is already known, but to prove that an actual crime took place. This can’t be easy and might explain the lengthy examination of witnesses who appear to us laymen to have said very little to advance the crown’s case, but they may have formed the pieces of a jigsaw that the prosecution will try to use to prove that fraud took place. The next 8 witnesses, who, it would appear, aren’t going to be in the dock for as long as the earlier witnesses, might be the ones the prosecution hope will show that a fraud did, in fact, take place. I suspect that we aren’t going to hear much more that is of great interest to us at SFM such as that relating to the football club, as it may well be the more boring technical stuff of what makes a bad deal a fraudulent act: until, that is, the defence witnesses take the stand!

    Going back to my cinema analogy, if it came out at trial that the cinema’s film projector wasn’t up to the standard the buyer thought (couldn’t show 3D movies), that wouldn’t mean he, himself, didn’t commit a fraud, and may well come under our old friend ‘caveat emptor’ anyway, where, at best, the purchaser might be told to go sue the seller in a civil court.

    I suspect there are nuances around what might be deemed to be fraud, a criminal offence, and the day to day bad deals that end up in civil court. These nuances might well rest, in some cases, on the status of individuals in a questionable deal! 

    View Comment
  71. Cluster One

    Cluster One


    ALLYJAMBOMAY 21, 2017 at 08:49
    Thanks for reply
    —————
    as it may well be the more boring technical stuff of what makes a bad deal a fraudulent act: until, that is, the defence witnesses take the stand!
    ——————-
    To me anyway it looks like this was a bad deal for someone.He was sold a pig in a poke,and as soon as he walked through the door he found out just how much pig was in the poke.If it was a fraudulant deal that turned out to be a bad deal in the end,some could say hell mend him or others could say he was duped.
    All may become clear in the next few weeks.
    Anyway off to game;-)

    View Comment
  72. HirsutePursuit


    A quick summary of some of what I believe has been submitted in evidence thus far.

    The purchase price for Murray’s shares in Rangers was £1. This price was agreed between purchaser and vendor as being fair value – taking account of the club’s known assets and it’s declared liabilities.

    Rangers sold tickets to Ticketus – before and after Mr Whyte’s purchase of the club.

    A deal to sell tickets to Ticketus was made by Mr Whyte before his purchase of the club – but didn’t ‘crystallise’ until the pound was ‘flicked across the table’.

    Wavetower retained the historic floating charge previously held by the bank.

    The net debt between Wavetower and the club was £0 after Wavetower borrowed money from the club to repay the club’s Lloyds bank loan.

    One of the charges faced by Mr Whyte is that he uses the club’s own assets to fund his purchase of Murray’s shares in Rangers.

    The overall deal has been worth £20m – £33m by various witnesses.

    No one has suggested that the Murray shares were purchased for more than £1.

    No one has suggested that the club’s net liabilities were increased by Wavetower’s purchase of Murray’s shares for £1, the sale of tickets to Ticketus, or the borrowing by Wavetower from the club to repay the club’s bank debt.

    There are another 8 witnesses to be called by the Crown.

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  73. easyJambo


    HirsutePursuit May 21, 2017 at 09:55
    A quick summary of some of what I believe has been submitted in evidence thus far.
    The purchase price for Murray’s shares in Rangers was £1. This price was agreed between purchaser and vendor as being fair value – taking account of the club’s known assets and it’s declared liabilities.
    Rangers sold tickets to Ticketus – before and after Mr Whyte’s purchase of the club.
    A deal to sell tickets to Ticketus was made by Mr Whyte before his purchase of the club – but didn’t ‘crystallise’ until the pound was ‘flicked across the table’.
    Wavetower retained the historic floating charge previously held by the bank.
    The net debt between Wavetower and the club was £0 after Wavetower borrowed money from the club to repay the club’s Lloyds bank loan.
    One of the charges faced by Mr Whyte is that he uses the club’s own assets to fund his purchase of Murray’s shares in Rangers.
    The overall deal has been worth £20m – £33m by various witnesses.
    No one has suggested that the Murray shares were purchased for more than £1.
    No one has suggested that the club’s net liabilities were increased by Wavetower’s purchase of Murray’s shares for £1, the sale of tickets to Ticketus, or the borrowing by Wavetower from the club to repay the club’s bank debt.
    There are another 8 witnesses to be called by the Crown.
    ========================
    Some points worth clarifying.

    With regard to the £1 paid for the shares, that was only one element of the Share Purchase Agreement (SPA).  It was the SPA which was the contract between Wavetower and Murray Group, not just the £1 paid for the shares.  Much of the earlier arguments in court had the Crown claiming that the conditions of the sale (£18m to Lloyds, £2.8m for the wtc, £1.7m for H&S activities, £5m working capital and £5m per year investment in the squad) were binding obligations on Whyte as part of the contract.  Findlay has sought to argue that some of the obligations were only “intentions” on the part of Whyte, or that he had 12 months to make good on the promises.

    The release of the Ticketus funds was conditional on completion of the SPA.  The deal was signed on the evening of 6 May with the shares transferred at that point, so Whyte was in control of the club as the major shareholder from that point on. It was claimed a “notional” Board meeting between Whyte and Betts took place on 7 May at which two things were agreed, 1) the club sold the STs to Ticketus (RFC now had access to the funds) and 2) sanctioned a loan of £16m by RFC to Wavetower.  As part of the wider SPA Wavetower was assigned the debt and securities from Lloyds after the Ticketus funds were released and Lloyds was paid off on 9th May. Wavetower at that point owed RFC £16m, and in turn RFC was obliged to sell around 40% of their STs on behalf of Ticketus over the next three seasons.

    The breach of Company Law alleged is that RFC’s funds were used to fund the purchase of the club. There are arguments still to be had whether or not that was the case, or simply that Whyte as the controlling shareholder had the authority to make the arrangements that saw RFC raise funds (from Ticketus) to pay their own debt (to Lloyds via Wavetower). 

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  74. Homunculus

    Homunculus


    EASYJAMBO
    MAY 21, 2017 at 11:03
    ===============================

    Thanks for that, a good summary.

    Can I just add that whilst as you say “Wavetower at that point owed RFC £16m …”  I believe Wavetower were also owed a similar amount by the club, as Wavetower had actually bought the debt from Lloyds using the money they borrowed. 

    As I said earlier I find it easier to understand how the Companies Act offences could be evidenced, I struggle with the fraud. As I have also said, I think Findlay will obfuscate matters and ask the Jury to consider not only who was deceived but also who the victim of this crime was. A not proven is as good as a not guilty to his client. 

    https://www.fraudadvisorypanel.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/Criminal-fraud-in-Scotland-4th-edition-December2015.pdf

    Common law fraud
    Common law fraud is the common ‘catch all’ for most fraud prosecutions in Scotland.
    Fraud is committed when someone achieves a practical result by the means of a false pretence.
    In other words, where someone is caused to do something they would not otherwise have done by use of deception

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  75. woodstein

    woodstein


    From Mills and Reeve
    What is financial assistance?
    “Currently it is unlawful for a company or any of its subsidiaries to give any financial assistance, for the purpose of the purchase of its own shares or any shares in its holding company. This is only an issue where shares are being acquired, not assets. The type of assistance prohibited can take a variety of forms: from the straightforward provision of a loan or payment of fees to the granting of security over the company’s assets or the giving of a guarantee. Unfortunately, exactly what constitutes financial assistance is not clear. There are severe penalties for breach, namely a fine for the company and fines and/or criminal liability for directors”
     
    Was this financial assistance?
    “Most of the capital used by Glazer to purchase Manchester United came in the form of loans, the majority of which were secured against the club’s assets, incurring interest payments of over £60 million per annum”
    02

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  76. Massive support from Clumpany Towers, which I know will be echoed everywhere. https://t.co/DYGVxqksu1

    "The words Jackson chose to write today could be potentially damaging to a very small charity like ours"

    https://t.co/9EAQs8CBNt

    50 Years Ago Today: Jinky sees red as poor run continues 23rd September 1967: Celtic v St Johnstone – League https://t.co/IUAcIl73XI

    In hide and seek terms, they have some way to go to beat your lack of comment on BTC outcome & whether there should be an independent review https://t.co/s5SPou4MFD

    Please share folks, especially with those who still don't get it.

    https://t.co/yLFe1ncPfQ

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