More key information from FTT report for Nimmo Smith Commission


The enormity of the forthcoming SPL Commission report could easily be lost in the ocean of headlines which has engulfed this matter in recent years.  I’ve noted below more information from the recent First Tier Tribunal report on Rangers tax case, in an attempt to clarify some of the key issues.

From The Evidence:

“The Appellants’ first witness was Mr Red, a senior member of the group’s tax function.  He is a Chartered Tax Advisor and qualified as a tax inspector previously to joining the Appellants.”

“Mr Red insisted in his evidence that the Trust was not a means of “tax avoidance””.

“It was noted in an internal memo prepared by Mr Red dated 8 September 2005 to the Board of MIH that he had described the Trust as a form of “tax avoidance scheme””.

Dissenting opinion from Ms Poon:

The Nature of the Side-letters
“Another strand of evidence being tested was the nature and purpose of the side-letters.  Asked about the secrecy surrounding the side-letters, referring to the fact that they were not lodged with the SFA, nor disclosed in the long period of HMRC’s enquiry, Mr Red’s reply was: ‘I still say there is nothing secret about them. We have nothing to hide in these side letters’.

“It is not accepted that there had been no deliberate concealment of the side-letters, in view of how the first side-letter only came to light through the seizure of Mr Berwick’s file nearly four years into the enquiry.

“It is not accepted that the nondisclosure of the side-letters arose from a ‘credible’ view that Mr Red considered the side-letters irrelevant to HMRC’s enquiry. As a former Inspector of Taxes, Mr Red knew, or should have known, that the side-letters were highly relevant to the enquiry.”

“The side-letters showed a form of contractual arrangement, and they proved linkage between the sums contributed into the sub-trusts at the appointed dates and their withdrawal as loans from the sub-trusts as contemporaneous transactions. The contractual aspect and the linkage between the amounts of contributions to the main Trust and the sums loaned had been repeatedly raised in the enquiry correspondence.

“A fair conclusion to be drawn from the circumstantial evidence on the one hand, and Mr Red’s oral evidence on the other, is that the side-letters had been actively concealed. The reason for the concealment might have been, in Mr Red’s view, the side-letters could be incriminating evidence against the impression of the trust operation that he had been trying to give.”

“While not denying the proposition put to him by the Respondents that ‘there’s an overarching contract with each of the footballers, consisting of the written contract and the side letters’, Mr Red maintained that ‘it’s our view that the side-letter or the letters of undertaking do not need to be registered or lodged with the SFA’ (Day 3/31-32).”

So, in evidence, Rangers witness Mr Red, did not deny the proposition that there was an overarching contract with footballers consisting of the declared contract and side-letters, but “it’s our view” that side-letters did not need to be lodged with the lodge SFA.  Ms Poon suggests a fair conclusion is the side-letters were “actively concealed” as they could be “incriminating evidence”.

The SFA has issued disciplinary action against many clubs for erroneous registration but no club has ever faced a charge of actively concealing information necessary for proper registration.

The SFA president was a working director of Rangers when “our view” was established and was legally responsible for the club’s actions.  As I noted yesterday, but, frankly, can still not comprehend, on publication of this report the president announced himself “somewhat vindicated” by its contents.

Majority opinion:

John McClelland became a board member of Rangers in 2000 (legally responsible for conduct and oversight) and according to Wikipedia held senior board level positions in the electronics industry.  He was also a director of the SPL (legally responsible for conduct and oversight) between the company being formed 1997 and 2008.

The majority opinion, which favoured Rangers position in regards to income tax, noted the following about Mr Indigo, who was “a board member of Rangers since 2000. His previous career was in industry, latterly serving in senior executive roles.”

Mr Indigo “acknowledged that he was, however, aware of the overall content of arrangements made with players and did not consider these to be “secret”. He believed that the Trust had been used to pay appearance money and bonuses.”

According to rules established by SPL directors, including Mr McClelland, money paid in connection with football, including appearance money, has to be registered with the league.  It also has to be registered with the SFA.

When the Lord Nimmo Smith Commission reports, we will discover if this is what passes as vindication in Scottish football, or if a senior officeholder of the SFA, and others, will be dismissed in disgrace and banned, sine die, from the game.

We are busy pulling the next issue of CQN Magazine together.  If you would like to write an article, or take out some advertising , get in touch, article@cqnmagazine.co.uk.
[calameo code=000390171980e8545b80a lang=en page=10 hidelinks=1 width=100% height=500]

Click Here for Comments >

About Author

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. ...
  4. 5
  5. 6
  6. 7
  7. 8
  8. 9
  9. 10
  10. 11
  11. ...
  12. 20

  1. jungle jim



    17:12 on 26 February, 2013


    Has anyone noticed how seldom Philvis gains a Page Podium?


    The New Article podium is, obviously, to do with PC technology. The Page Podium is much more of an intuitive talent. It`s a bit like comparing Kris Boyd and The King of Kings. The record books will show Boyd`s goals tally but they do not show the sheer quality of Henrik.





    But when the records are amended to show 0-3 for every game they fielded ineligible players, Boyd will no longer have more than Henrik.



    That would be a satisfactory outcome for me. Along with the titles being removed and the financial penalties being imposed on Sevco.

  2. ItaliaBhoy



    17:21 on 26 February, 2013





    ‘LNS? If there is a lawyers’ way out, he will find it IMHO.’




    That’s my concern.



    And if there is a lawyer’s way out, he’ll find it.

  3. Tallybhoy



    Think a cqner BBQ day will be a summer event, these posh lunches we are having are way too civilised….except for oldtims port which went down a treat but made us aw mad wae it!



    Where are our landscape gardeners?

  4. Arty,



    I’ve cranked thon handle a couple of times in my time. Never had to pull the clutch, right enough, although I used to think that was the only way a car started…Wait a wee minute, I’m so auld, I have even forgotten that I have pulled ye olde clutch out. Memory, eh…

  5. Gene’s a Bhoys name






    I thought the English were less prone to Catholic bashing but then again they have a whole media in the dock for corruption.



    It must be a welcome relief for them having a cardinal to pursue instead of their own tails.

  6. The picture of Cardinal OBrien with Saville is a disgrace, but it’s open season on the church now I’m afraid.

  7. A bit off topic but perhaps appropriate with the Pope stepping down…………..





    The Pope & The Rabbi



    Every time a new Pope is elected, there are many rituals in accordance with tradition, but, there is one tradition that very few people know about.



    Shortly after a new Pope is enthroned, the Chief Rabbi of Rome seeks an audience. He is shown into the Pope’s presence, whereupon he presents the Pope with a silver tray bearing a velvet cushion. On top of the cushion is an ancient, shriveled envelope. The Pope symbolically stretches out his arm in a gesture of rejection. The Chief Rabbi then retires, taking the envelope with him and does not return until the next Pope is elected.



    A new Pope’s reign was shortly followed by a new Chief Rabbi. He was intrigued by this ritual and that its origins were unknown to him. He instructed the best scholars of the Vatican to research it, but they came up with nothing.



    When the time came and the Chief Rabbi was shown into his presence, they faithfully enacted the ritual rejection but, as the Chief Rabbi turned to leave, the Pope called him back.



    “My brother,” the Pope whispered, “I must confess that we Catholics are ignorant of the meaning of this ritual enacted for centuries between us and you, the representative of the Jewish people. I have to ask you, what is it all about?”



    The Chief Rabbi shrugged and replied: “We have no more idea than you do. The origin of the ceremony is lost in the traditions of ancient history.”



    The Pope said: “Let us retire to my private chambers and enjoy a glass of kosher wine together; then with your agreement, we shall open the envelope and discover the secret at last.” The Chief Rabbi agreed.



    Fortified in their resolve by the wine, they gingerly pried open the curling parchment envelope and with trembling fingers, the Chief Rabbi reached inside and extracted a folded sheet of similarly ancient paper.



    As the Pope peered over his shoulder, he slowly opened it. They both gasped with shock —



    It was a bill for the Last Supper — from “Moishe the Caterer.”

  8. My philosophy regarding Priests, Publicans and Garda.



    It is, as long as they are there when I need them.

  9. TBB the sfa rules you cite, when read together, require all ts and cs anent PAYMENT to be lodged with the SFA. If (and it is an if, as the FTTT is being appealed, and even if not appealed is not binding) LNS takes the same definition f payment as the majority at tribunal, I dont think the sfa rules take the SPL any further forward than rule d1.13 on the dual contract point. In fact, the sfa rules are even clearer in their qualification of the obligation to disclose as only attaching to payment ts and cs.



    the pension scenario you outline would be less controversial than the ebt arrangements from the point of view of the spl and sfa rules, as it is clearly a payment. The deferment of the tax liability doesn’t determine the question of “payment” or “discretionary loan”, it is the placing of the funds at the unfettered disposal of the players that determines that point.



    i think, if LNS comes down on the same side as the majority on the question of payment, then the sfa and rule d9.3 section f the charge is gubbed, and only rule d1.13 will be up for grabs.



    I think it is, however, fairly clear from the fttt that rfc took a deliberate risk with player registrations. They did it to obtain a competitive advantage. if LNS finds against them, I fully expect titles 2009, 2010 and 2011 scratched. 2003 and 2005 are less simple due to the spl rules in force at the time.



    sorry for typos, on phone at train station.

  10. London Irish rugby team charged with fielding improperly registered player, hearing Tuesday, guess they must have been more forthcoming with evidence.

  11. The opportunity to correct an Italian on his motors doesn’t come along too often in life.



    ItaliaBhoy @17:21 wasn’t it the Fiat 124?



    The 126 was produced in Poland.

  12. Gene's a Bhoys name on

    off out to Port Vale v Exeter



    hopefully it will be good news for one Pope



    think of me freezing my tootsies off while you watch el classico

  13. Gene's a Bhoys name on



    our home form can be a bit iffy – hopefully you’ll get a return on your bet – enjoy your night out

  14. Thindimebhoy




    17:25 on



    26 February, 2013


    Gene’s a Bhoys name




    I thought the English were less prone to Catholic bashing but then again they have a whole media in the dock for corruption.


    It must be a welcome relief for them having a cardinal to pursue instead of their own tails.






    Anti Catholicism is an issue in England though it doesn’t manifest itself in the same manner we see in Scotland.

  15. What the hell was that monstrosity the FPLG was wearing on his face? looked like one of those no moustache just the beard type of facial hair grooming or more likely hiding his world record quadruple chins

  16. A Ceiler Gonof Rust on




    I’ve not been on the blog much recently miki for various reasons but still have a daily “power lurk”. I love your posts at the best of times but your post at 13.49 was a cracker. Good luck and good health to you, and I sincerely hope everything works out with your ongoing health issues.



    You are a prince among posters. Keep up the good work.




    Hail Hail Bruv




  17. The Battered Bunnet on

    Cheers Gerry, appreciate your time.



    Remember though that a pension fund is not ‘unreservedly at the disposal of the employee’ either, and that the FTT decision regarding what constitutes payment is coloured, indeed defined by what constitutes: “payment… of emoluments or earnings giving rise to an obligation to deduct income and pay it to the Revenue”.



    The problem of course that LNS has with basing his decision on any contentious point in the FTT is that in due course the point upon which he relies may be overturned at UTT.



    That’s the Disaster for Scottish Football that is the FTT split decision and consequent appeal. If it had been a unanimous verdict, or had it not been appealed, the Commission would have been on firmer ground.



    The Commission now can only reliably draw on findings of fact, not findings in Law until the matter is finally settled, and even then, the dissenting view has further findings in fact that clutter it all up yet further.



    If he needs to rely on a definition provided by the UTT, he necessarily must defer his decision until that time, perhaps 2 years hence, longer again if it goes to the Lords.



    I think the Commission will find a working definition of ‘payment’ that is not reliant on decisions under challenge, and which is well precedented and long accepted.



    What that might be is another matter entirely of course.




  18. Gene's a Bhoys name on



    I must admit in the 40 years i’ve been down here i haven’t experienced much anti catholic sentiment.


    there is of course the burning of an effigy of the Pope in Lewes each year – but that’s only banter!

  19. Some of you on here know my brother in law is a priest so events over the past few days have hit hard. However I am in London for a couple of days and my 5 year old called me last night and, for the first time recited the Hail Mary and Our Father – word perfect. She had been practising in class and wanted to wait until she got it just right before telling me. A coincidence or a sign? – will let you ponder that but it I know what I took from it

  20. TBB, a pension fund entitlement does, at a deferred stage, come to be at the unreserved disposition of the employee, albeit the entitlement may be staggered. That is why think that hypothetical would be more of an open and shut case from pov of spl.



    I agree the UTT is a nightmare; I can see merit n lns deferring his case until the UTT sits, while making clear he isnt hitching his wagon to the UTT”s star! It is more important that the lns decision is made well than that it is made quickly.

  21. Bom dia,



    Dunno if it got much coverage back home, but in last Weds Libertadores game in Bolivia (San Jose v Corinthians) a 14 yr old Bolivian was killed when a parachute flare was launched from the Corinthians support.



    12 Corinthians fans were held by Bolivian police, including several of the recognised Ultra groups. Eventually a 17yr old from this group confessed that he launched the flare and he has since been repatriated for trial here in Brasil.



    However, being 17, he is still considered a “minor” and the legal process is not as heavy as it would be for an adult (nor can he be extradited to face trial in Bolivia). Many are saying that he is a “Patsy” who has been paid by the Ultra’s to take the fall.



    Corinthians have now been sentenced by Conmebol to play all their home Libertadores games behind closed doors. Some are saying they should have been expelled from this year’s competition.






    Just wondered what everybody’s views are on this one?



    Personally, I’d support the Corinthians immediate ban movement.

  22. kelvinbhoy


    You raise me up,you lifted a dark cloud, that wis hingen our an Auld Papa.


    Awerabest PJ

  23. Btw, I see no reason why the commission is bound by either FTTT or UT in relation to questions of fact or law. A future FTTT would be bound by the UT on an identical point, but the charges in the spl commission are totally different to what the fttt heard.

  24. Ntassoola



    My very first car was a (very) used Fiat 124 purchased in 1973, shortly after I passed my test.



    Worst car I ever had.




  25. First car


    Austin 1100 cost £250 second hand, had a pull out choke and went like the clappers!



  26. Gene



    I’ve had spells living and working in England.



    In the south I’m seen as harmless, up here the ignorance of bigots deems me a threat.

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. ...
  4. 5
  5. 6
  6. 7
  7. 8
  8. 9
  9. 10
  10. 11
  11. ...
  12. 20