Tag Archives: inquiry

Ally McCoist assured Craig Whyte will not return to Ibrox

McCoist receives assurances that Whyte will not return to Ibrox

PUBLISHED:

23:15 GMT, 6 April 2013

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UPDATED:

23:15 GMT, 6 April 2013

Rangers chief executive Charles Green has held talks with Ally McCoist to assure the manager there was “never any possibility” of Craig Whyte returning to the club.

The move comes after the former owner apparently claimed he was behind the original Ibrox newco.

Whyte has threatened legal action against Green and former Rangers director Imran Ahmad, demanding 1million a year for life or 25 per cent of Green's shares.

Talks: Rangers Chairman Charles Green (left) gave Ally McCoist (right) assurance

Talks: Rangers Chairman Charles Green (left) gave Ally McCoist (right) assurance

Talks: Rangers Chairman Charles Green (left) gave Ally McCoist (right) assurance

Whyte, whose own Rangers takeover remains the subject of a police inquiry, claims he was the main driver behind the Sevco 5088 company which purchased the assets and business of the oldco Rangers company he had put into administration.

Days later Green transferred the assets, which were bought for 5.5million in June last year, to a different company called Sevco Scotland which then became The Rangers Football Club.

Whyte's main argument appears to be that such a transfer was illegal and he remains the rightful owner of the club's assets.

Green released a statement last night in a bid to clarify the situation and has moved to explain things further this evening following talks with McCoist, who had asked the new owner for answers.

'I spoke with Ally McCoist today and we are agreed that, despite the wild and outlandish allegations tossed around by Craig Whyte, the one thing that matters most is the rebuilding of this club,' Green said.

'I am totally committed to that and Ally is exactly the same. Neither of us will be deflected from our task. We share the same goal and we will be successful no matter who or what attempts to get in our way.

Takeover talk: Craig Whyte

Takeover talk: Craig Whyte

'I made it absolutely clear to Ally that there was never any possibility of Whyte returning to Ibrox and I also stressed that this man has no claim on any of the club's shares or assets.

'I wanted to make sure he understood what Whyte is trying to do because, like every other fan, our manager has a right to know if the disgraced former owner still has any involvement in this club.

'I told Ally that is not the case and that there was never any possibility of Whyte being involved with my group.

'Ally knows and accepts that I cannot be held responsible for Whyte's ramblings or his ridiculous claims. But Ally is a fan and he would have been alarmed at the re-emergence of Whyte and his claims.

'Along with all the good and loyal Rangers fans Ally has lived through the brief but calamitous Whyte era and the very mention of this man's name is enough to have even the strongest of them concerned. But there is no need for any anxiety.

'Rangers FC, no part of it and none of the assets will ever fall into Whyte's hands. If I have to I will stand at the front door and deny him entry.

'I can guarantee every single fan that I will not let them down and that Whyte has no claim on any part of this great club.'

McCoist added: 'Yes we spoke and I'm glad we did. I never believed that Charles had entered into any kind of agreement but it was important to have a chat after what the former owner had been putting about in the papers.

'I am a fan and it would be devastating to have this man back anywhere near the club he almost destroyed.'

Sale confident of John Mitchell capture

Sale confident of snaring Mitchell despite claims he wants South Africa return

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UPDATED:

13:55 GMT, 5 November 2012

The Sale coaching saga surrounding former All Blacks coach John Mitchell took a further twist on Monday when he claimed he wanted to return to his head coach’s role for Johannesburg-based Golden Lions.

But Sportsmail understands Mitchell is still poised to join Sale as a consultant this month despite the comments from South Africa.

Mitchell, who attended Sale’s recent games in the Heineken Cup, returned to Johannesburg last week to sort out his troubled employment at the Super 15 team following an internal inquiry into charges of misconduct.

Up in the air: John Mitchell is still set to join Sale Sharks

Up in the air: John Mitchell is still set to join Sale Sharks

That inquiry, according to Mitchell’s management company, has found the New Zealander not guilty and they are pressing for the findings to be published.

‘Even though John has been cleared of these particular allegations, the GLRU, through its lawyers, is not prepared to release details to John or his lawyers,’ said a statement from the Fordham management company.

‘That's pretty amazing considering the damage that this action taken by the GLRU has done to John's reputation and brand.

‘Furthermore, the GLRU's lawyers have advised John's lawyers that they are not prepared to release the findings and recommendations pertaining to the remaining nine charges brought against John unless John agrees to sign a confidentiality agreement.’

Mitchell told media in Johannesburg that he wanted to return to his head coach’ s role, having been stood down pending the inquiry.

Struggles: Sale have failed to find their form this season

Struggles: Sale have failed to find their form this season

‘There is some unfinished business to do with the Lions. Furthermore, I am determined that my future will be in South Africa,’ he said.

However, Sportsmail understands Sale remain confident they will have Mitchell taking up a consultant’s role in the near future.

Mitchell was named last week as part of Sale’s new rugby board alongside chief executive Steve Diamond and Bryan Redpath, the former Scotland scrum-half, who has been demoted from director of rugby to head coach following the team’s run of only one win in eight Premiership games.

Redpath, having agreed a new role last week, was then part of the coaching team who guided the team to a first Premiership win last Friday, against London Irish.

Lance Armstrong sanctions backed by WADA

WADA back USADA sanctions against shamed Armstrong

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UPDATED:

00:48 GMT, 3 November 2012

The World Anti-Doping Agency has confirmed they will not appeal against the United States Anti-Doping Agency's sanctions against Lance Armstrong.

USADA recommend that all Armstrong's results from August 1, 1998 were expunged from the record books, including his seven consecutive Tour de France 'wins' from 1999 to 2005, as well as handing the 41-year-old a life ban from cycling.

The International Cycling Union (UCI) last week ratified the sanctions imposed by USADA, who concluded Armstrong and his United States Postal Service team ran 'the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen'.

Shamed: Armstrong speaks at a charity event last month

Shamed: Armstrong speaks at a charity event last month

But while the UCI did highlight some criticisms of USADA, WADA appear unequivocal in their support of the findings.

Commenting on the decision, WADA President John Fahey said: 'WADA has no such concerns as to the complete process and the overwhelming weight of evidence.

'Rather it is of the opinion that the actions of USADA have highlighted the need in all cases for athletes to be able to come forward with evidence that will help rid sport of doping cheats.'

Fahey went on to reference the UCI's suggestion that an independent inquiry would be convened to investigate further, though confirmed WADA had yet to be contacted about taking part.

His words appeared to betray some distance between the bodies but Fahey insisted WADA must have a role if any such inquiry was to carry the required weight.

From hero to villain: Armstrong during the 1999 Tour de France

From hero to villain: Armstrong during the 1999 Tour de France

'Following the UCI Management Committee's announcement last week, WADA now awaits with considerable interest the details of the independent inquiry that is proposed, including its composition and terms of reference,' said Fahey.

'It is important that there now be genuine independence and a complete examination of the scenario, with a panel that has full powers of inquiry and access to all required evidence and information.

'Only with the necessary independence and terms of reference will the inquiry be able to properly address the systemic culture of doping that was allowed to develop in cycling during this time.

'WADA has had no communication from the UCI with regards to their upcoming inquiry, nor indeed the Armstrong reasoned decision, nor the UCI Management decisions. WADA will want to contribute to the inquiry if it is established and resourced beyond reproach.

'This is not a situation in which just because the athlete did not return a positive test there was nothing more the governing body of cycling could do. It has taken a major effort and undertaking from a national anti-doping organisation to gather the compelling evidence following allegations raised by Floyd Landis in 2010.

'This case has resulted in a right and proper sanction for the athlete in question and has served as a revelation to the world of sport. For this USADA must be applauded.'

It was confirmed only on Thursday that the International Olympic Committee had opened their own investigation into Armstrong, with the possible result of the rider being stripped of the bronze medal he won at the Sydney Games in 2000.

Mark Clattenburg under siege as FA and police probe ref

Clattenburg under siege as police and FA probe race-row ref following Chelsea claim

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UPDATED:

23:37 GMT, 29 October 2012

Mark Clattenburg is fighting to save his career after the Football Association and police began formal investigations into allegations that he racially abused Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel.

Clattenburg has denied making any inappropriate comments and his account will be backed by assistants Michael McDonough and Simon Long, along with fourth official Mike Jones.

The referee, at the centre of the storm on Sunday following his handling of Chelsea’s 3-2 defeat by Manchester United at Stamford Bridge, complied with FA regulations by filing an ‘extraordinary incident’ report on Monday.

Scroll down for video

In the spotilight: Mark Clattenburg, leaves his home near Newcastle on Monday

In the spotilight: Mark Clattenburg, leaves his home near Newcastle on Monday

Grabbing a lift: Clattenburg jumped into a car with fellow ref Michael Oliver

Grabbing a lift: Clattenburg jumped into a car with fellow ref Michael Oliver

It relates to Chelsea allegations that he made inappropriate remarks to two of their players and was later confronted by manager Roberto Di Matteo, Mikel and chief executive Ron Gourlay.

Mikel did not hear the alleged abuse, but the account has been backed up by two Chelsea players — reported to be Brazilian duo Ramires and David Luiz — who are both prepared to make statements.

The 85,000-a-year official has been taken off this weekend’s Premier League match list as the FA compliance department begins a top-level inquiry.

Police will begin an investigation after Peter Herbert, chairman of the Society of Black Lawyers, wrote asking them to open up an investigation into Clattenburg’s conduct. That could damage the FA’s hopes of a speedy resolution — waiting for a police inquiry to end meant John Terry’s recent case ultimately took nearly a year to be decided

Accused: Clattenburg is alleged to have racially abused John Obi Mikel (right) during Chelsea's defeat

Accused: Clattenburg is alleged to have racially abused John Obi Mikel (right) during Chelsea's defeat

Dispute: Mikel complains to Clattenburg as his side slump to defeat at Stamford Bridge

Dispute: Mikel complains to Clattenburg as his side slump to defeat at Stamford Bridge

Meanwhile, the investigation will jeopardise Clattenburg’s standing in the game and could affect his chances of making it on to the FIFA list for the 2014 World Cup. In addition to Clattenburg’s initial incident report, which was studied by the FA’s governance department on Monday morning, he will be asked to provide a detailed statement of the controversial incidents.

Chelsea allege Clattenburg used ‘inappropriate language’ in two separate exchanges with Mikel and Chelsea winger Juan Mata during their first Premier League defeat of the season.

Assistants McDonough and Long — who both ran the line — and fourth official Jones will provide additional statements for the FA’s compliance department.

Marching orders: Referee Mark Clattenburg showed two red cards to Chelsea players on Sunday

Marching orders: Referee Mark Clattenburg showed two red cards to Chelsea players on Sunday

Marching orders: Branislav Ivanovic was sent off (above) while Clattenburg struggled to contain both sides

Marching orders: Branislav Ivanovic was sent off (above) while Clattenburg struggled to contain both sides

Fernando Torres of Chelsea talks to referee Mark Clattenburg

They wore ‘crystal clear’ wireless technology microphones which suppress crowd noise and allow officials to communicate without distraction. Although the conversations are not recorded, Professional Game Match Officials sources claim it is ‘inconceivable’ that the use of an offensive or inappropriate phrase would not have been heard by the officials.

A statement released on Monday said: ‘PGMO believe that, with any football match, the focus should not be on the officials but on the players and the game itself. Mark Clattenburg is one of the elite referees in world football and, in these circumstances, the intense level of scrutiny would detract from the match and be unfair to the clubs and the supporters of both sides.’

Tough time: Clattenburg was given a hostile reception by the Chelsea fans as he left the field

Tough time: Clattenburg was given a hostile reception by the Chelsea fans as he left the field

Winner: Javier Hernandez scores Manchester United's third goal (above) and celebrates (below)

Winner: Javier Hernandez scores Manchester United's third goal

 Javier Hernandez scores

VIDEO: Did referee abuse black Chelsea player See the John Obi Mikel incident here…

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Rangers SFA hearing adjourned

Rangers SFA hearing adjourned after Whyte's lawyers ask for more time

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UPDATED:

17:28 GMT, 29 March 2012

The Scottish Football Association
have adjourned their hearing into Craig Whyte and Rangers after Whyte's
lawyers asked for more time to prepare a case.

The hearing, which was to take place
in front of a three-man judiciary panel at Hampden on Thursday, followed
Lord Nimmo Smith's independent inquiry which ended with the SFA
charging the administration-hit Ibrox club and owner Whyte with seven
breaches of its rules.

More time: Owner Craig Whyte's lawyers had SFA hearing adjourned

More time: Owner Craig Whyte's lawyers had SFA hearing adjourned

The club is charged with five offences, including failing to abide by SFA regulations over the “fit and proper” person's test, and Whyte, ruled unfit by the SFA to be a club official, with two more.

Rangers claim there are mitigating factors and will hope to persuade the panel to distinguish between the actions of one man and the actions of the club.

The SFA released a statement which read: 'At today's (Thursday) Judicial Panel Tribunal at Hampden Park, representatives for Mr Craig Whyte submitted a request by letter for further time to prepare their response to alleged breaches of the Scottish FA disciplinary rules.

Troubled times: Financial problems at Ibrox

Troubled times: Financial problems at Ibrox

'The panel adjourned the hearing, with three days set aside for both Mr Whyte and Rangers FC to attend on April 17, 18 and 20.

'A procedural hearing has also been assigned for April 6 for Mr Whyte to lodge a substantive response and for representations to be made as to state of preparation.'

Charles Sale: FIFA urged to look at World Cup vote

FIFA urged to look at controversial World Cup vote processes

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UPDATED:

22:53 GMT, 27 March 2012

A new independent inquiry into the controversial 2018 and 2022 World Cup votes is expected to be one of the recommendations in an official report detailing root-and-branch reforms needed at FIFA.

The sweeping proposals include independent directors joining the FIFA executive committee, transparency over salaries and an outside judicial body regulating on future corruption issues. They would also probe current scandals involving FIFA top brass, such as the decisions to stage World Cups in Russia and Qatar.

The tough measures are the work of FIFA’s own governance committee, headed by Swiss lawyer Mark Pieth, professor of criminology at Basle University, whose findings are to be discussed this week by the FIFA executive. If accepted, they will go to the FIFA congress in May for approval.

Controversy: Qatar will host the 2022 World Cup despite much opposition

Controversy: Qatar will host the 2022 World Cup despite much opposition

Pieth had been expected to detail only how FIFA should run world football in future. But the way continued allegations around the World Cup bidding process have been swept under the carpet has led to his committee’s likely proposal to re-visit the voting scandal in Zurich in December 2010 — when England, Australia and the United States felt especially aggrieved by serial double dealing.

Lord Goldsmith, the former Attorney General who is on the 13-strong governance group, has said: ‘We have looked closely at the way allegations regarding those World Cup host selections have been dealt with and we have not been satisfied with the level of investigation which has taken place.’

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VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

Meanwhile, the FA would happily trade the British vice-presidency on the FIFA executive for continued home nations influence on the rules-governing IFAB.

Yet such is the opposition of Germany’s Theo Zwanziger, especially to the GB-centric composition of IFAB, that representatives from South America, Europe and Asia are expected to be included in future.

Spreading it thin

Sky co-commentator Matt Le Tissier surprisingly drew attention to a notorious failed betting scam when he remarked after Fulham won the first corner against Manchester United after 13 minutes on Monday that it would have been a good spread bet.

The former Southampton forward said in his autobiography he attempted to concede a throw-in straight from the kick-off against Wimbledon in 1995 because money was riding on it. Team-mate Neil Shipperley, unaware of the punt, kept the ball in play.

Choices

Gareth Southgate, the FA’s part-time head of elite performance, ticks all the boxes for the advertised FA technical director post. But he is likely to have to forfeit his pundit role with ITV if he is appointed.

Southgate has been offered a new contract by ITV, but the high-profile FA position, based at St George’s Park in Burton, is not a good fit with analysing England games for ITV.

One almost done, another to go

RFU chief executive Ian Ritchie’s imminent call over the appointment of the next England coach will have to be followed by an equally critical long-term decision over the future of the performance department headed by Twickenham’s great survivor Rob Andrew.

Performances must improve: Rob Andrew continues his work behind the scenes

Performances must improve: Rob Andrew continues his work behind the scenes

The Andrew division will effectively receive a vote of confidence if Stuart Lancaster, who has risen through the system, gets the England job.

Along with Lancaster, all the other main age-group England coaches — John Fletcher, Peter Walton and Rob Hunter — are appointments by Andrew. Were Sir Clive Woodward, who has been the elephant in the room since he left the RFU in 2005, to return to Twickenham as an overall director of rugby, there would be no room for professional rugby director Andrew.

Auschwitz on agenda

A meeting at the FA next week will start putting in place the arrangements for England players to make a visit to the Auschwitz concentration camp from their Polish hotel base in Krakow before the start of Euro 2012.

Yet the final say on how many of the squad go on such a harrowing trip will be down to the yet-to-be appointed manager.

The FA are keeping to their agreed schedule of delaying naming Fabio Capello’s successor until mid-April at the earliest — even if the public are getting impatient.

Man City face revealing all about 100m training complex after United fan forces public inquiry

Manchester City's fight over 100m training complex heads for public inquiry… as United fan stands firm over land

Manchester City's plans for a world-beating training complex are heading for a public inquiry after they were blocked by a United fan.

The Blues revealed last July they want to
spend 100m transforming a run-down 80-acre plot in the shadow of the
Etihad Stadium. The plans include a 7,000-capacity arena, community
facilities and a sixth-form college.

Vision: An impression of Manchester City's plans for a new training academyVision: An impression of Manchester City's plans for a new training academy

Vision: An impression of Manchester City's plans for a new training academy

But United supporter Shaun O’Brien has
failed to sell the site of his vehicle recovery business, which is
situated on land earmarked for the development.

And he has offered to sell sections of the land for 250 each to fellow United supporters.

Now council chiefs will seek a compulsory purchase order for the site in a bid to push through the City scheme.

A CPO can only be issued by a
government minister after a public inquiry has been held before a
planning inspector.

The best laid plans: City executive Patrick Vieira views a model of the complex

The best laid plans: City executive Patrick Vieira views a model of the complex

But the move could mean City being forced to reveal undisclosed details about the vast project opposite the Etihad Stadium

Mr O’Brien – who claims to have
offered a compromise deal to the Blues – told the Manchester Evening
News: 'We were asked to attend a meeting at MCFC on 23 December 2011 –
the day before Christmas Eve. We agreed, on the proviso that a decision
maker would be present. Our compromise offer was accepted in principle
at the meeting.

'In our opinion, the purpose of this
CPO is solely to court the aspirations of a trillionaire business family
from the Middle East at the expense of local businessmen. Do they
really need a CPO Could they not have just done the honourable thing
and approached us with a fair offer

'The “public interest” element has
been squeezed out of this to justify what is to be a major financial
investment for a private business.'

Practice makes perfect: City currently use Carrington as a training base

Practice makes perfect: City currently use Carrington as a training base

The inquiry will also decide whether to grant a CPO on a second business, New Life Windows in nearby Quinn Street.

A City spokesman confirmed there will be a public inquiry but
declined to comment further.

Revealed: How police "blamed drunken Liverpool fans" for Hillsborough disaster

Revealed: How police 'blamed drunken Liverpool fans' for Hillsborough disaster

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UPDATED:

11:47 GMT, 16 March 2012

Families of Hillsborough victims reacted with outrage yesterday after it was revealed Merseyside Police told Margaret Thatcher the disaster was caused by drunken Liverpool fans.

Leaked documents show how senior officers blamed disorderly supporters just days after the 1989 stadium tragedy which left 96 dead.

At least one Liverpool-based policeman said he was ‘ashamed’ of the spectators’ behaviour.
Former chief constable: Sir Kenneth Oxford with his wife Muriel after receiving a CBE

Former chief constable: Sir Kenneth Oxford with his wife Muriel after receiving a CBE

The briefings contrast with the findings of the official inquiry, which pinned the blame on officers responsible for crowd control at the FA Cup semi-final at Sheffield Wednesday’s ground.

Supporters’ groups have been pushing for all documents surrounding the tragedy to be published, claiming there was an attempt to cover up police failings and discredit fans.

Yesterday it emerged that four days after the disaster, a member of then-prime minister Mrs Thatcher’s policy unit met Merseyside officers for their views on the cause.

According to the document, leaked to the BBC, chief constable Sir Kenneth Oxford told the adviser: ‘A key factor in causing the disaster was the fact that large numbers of Liverpool fans had turned up without tickets.

Hillsborough

‘This was getting lost sight of in attempts to blame the police, the football authorities, etc.’

Another – unnamed – officer was said to have directly blamed the supporters.

‘One officer, born and bred in Liverpool, said that he was deeply ashamed to say that it was drunken Liverpool fans who had caused this disaster, just as they had caused the deaths at Heysel,’ the note said.

The document is initialled ‘MT’, suggesting it was read by Mrs Thatcher, and the phrase ‘drunken Liverpool fans’ is underlined by hand.
Tragedy: Ninety-six people died at the Hillsborough disaster in 1989

Tragedy: Ninety-six people died at the Hillsborough disaster in 1989

Thirty-nine died at the Heysel stadium in Belgium in 1985 when Liverpool supporters charged Juventus fans.

Although the inquest into the Hillsborough deaths was told that vast quantities of alcohol had been consumed before kick-off, the official Taylor Report blamed the tragedy on blunders by South Yorkshire officers policing the match.

It said opening an exit gate just before kick-off enabled hundreds of fans to pour into a full ‘pen’ on the terraces, causing the fatal crush.

The Hillsborough Independent Panel, set up in 2009, is reviewing all official papers relating to the disaster with a view to their release later this year.

Blame: Another policeman also blamed Liverpool fans for the deaths, according to the document

Blame: Another policeman also said Liverpool fans were responsible for the deaths, according to the document

Sheila Coleman, of the Hillsborough Justice Campaign, said: ‘We are obviously disgusted with the views of Merseyside Police but to some of us that will come as no surprise.’

And Margaret Aspinall, whose 18-year-old son James died in the stadium, said the note confirmed her fears of an attempted cover-up.

‘The thing I’m most upset about is the way they are accusing the fans,’ she said.

‘They watched videos of what happened
that day and they (have seen) survivors running along with bodies and
maybe people who may be still alive on hoardings. They were the heroes
that day.

Disapproving: Sir Kenneth was concerned about Anfield being turned into a 'shrine', according to the papers

Disapproving: Sir Kenneth was concerned about Anfield being turned into a 'shrine', according to the papers

‘I find all of that absolutely appalling. Ninety-six lives and he was uneasy about it made into a shrine.

‘The
people who were there that day – the survivors, the fans – all needed
somewhere to go to show respect and to be grateful that no more had
died. He was ashamed that was made into a shrine. How appalling is
that’

Labour MP Andy Burnham, who has backed efforts to secure the documents’ release, said: ‘These papers seem to confirm what we’ve believed for many, many years – that immediate attempts were made from the highest levels to shift the blame on to the supporters and away from the police.’

Margaret Thatcher was told about the views of Merseyside Police four days after the tragedy

Margaret Thatcher was told about the views of Merseyside Police four days after the tragedy

A controversial figure, Sir Kenneth – who died in 1998 – was frequently at loggerheads with the city’s Labour-dominated police authority.

Last night former assistant chief constable Alison Halford, who was in charge of the force’s initial response to the disaster, said she was shocked by his views.

‘There was no suggestion at the time that fans were drunk,’ she said. ‘Sir Kenneth never spoke to me about what had happened and I find his comments absolutely appalling.’

Merseyside Chief Constable Jon Murphy said it would be inappropriate to comment.

Sheila Coleman of the Hillsborough
Justice Campaign said she was disgusted but not surprised at the views
expressed by the police.

‘Those
of us who were around Liverpool in the 1980s are well aware of Ken
Oxford’s racist and bigoted views, Presumably he recruited senior
officers with a similar mindset,’ she told the programme.

‘We are obviously disgusted with the views of Merseyside Police but to some of us that will come as no surprise.’

She also expressed concern at the timing of the leak and the fact that none of the papers related to the South Yorkshire force.

‘That
makes us very suspicious of how this information was leaked,’ she said.
‘Merseyside Police would have been informed by South Yorkshire Police.

‘We
find it a strange coincidence that this information is leaked only days
after we found out the panel are not going to report until the autumn.’

Craig Whyte not fit and proper person to run Rangers – SFA

Beleaguered Rangers owner Whyte 'not a fit and proper person' to run a club, rule SFA

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UPDATED:

20:38 GMT, 8 March 2012

The Scottish Football Association have ruled that Rangers owner Craig Whyte is not 'a fit and proper person' to run a football club following an independent inquiry into the stricken Scottish champions.

Rangers also face a charge of bringing the game into disrepute on four counts, after the findings of the inquiry were heard at a special board meeting at Hampden.

The ruling on Whyte – who took over Sir David Murray's majority shareholding last May – centres on revelations he was previously disqualified as a company director for seven years from 2000.

Troubled reign: Craig Whyte took over from Sir David Murray at Rangers last May

Troubled reign: Craig Whyte took over from Sir David Murray at Rangers last May

After discussing the findings of the inquiry, which was chaired by Lord Nimmo Smith, SFA chief executive Stewart Regan said: 'Principally, it is the belief of the board, taking into account the prima facie evidence presented today, that Mr Craig Whyte is not considered to be a fit and proper person to hold a position within Association Football.

'We will be writing to Mr Whyte in relation to those findings and shall seek a response within seven days.'

Responding to the SFA statement, a spokesman for Whyte said: 'The SFA has indicated it will be writing to Mr Whyte within seven days.

'Until that happens and he has had an opportunity to consider Lord Nimmo Smith's findings, it would be premature to make any comment.'

The SFA contacted Rangers on December 1 to seek clarification on Whyte's disqualification after the news was issued in a statement to the PLUS Stock Exchange as the club released their annual financial figures, which were unaudited.

The governing body's rules around the fit and proper person test specify that office bearers should not have been disqualified as a director 'within the previous five years'.

Crisis: Rangers are struggling to survive under the pressure of huge debts

Crisis: Rangers are struggling to survive under the pressure of huge debts

The SFA confirmed on February 17 – three days after Rangers went into administration – that they would conduct a full independent inquiry into the activities of the club and investigate whether there had been any potential breaches of their Articles of Association.

They said at that time attempts to clarify the 'fit and proper person' requirement had been restricted by the club solicitors' failure to share information.

On the charge of bringing the game into disrepute, Regan added: 'The report submitted by Lord Nimmo Smith, having been considered fully by the board, highlights a number of other potential rule breaches by the club and its owner.

'The report will now be used as evidence and forwarded to a Judicial Panel for consideration and determination as per the protocol.

'As such, the report's contents will not be published at this time.

'Nevertheless, I can confirm that the club is facing a charge of bringing the game into disrepute.

'Specifically, areas of potential breach to be considered by the Judicial Panel include: Obligations and duties of members, Official return, Financial records, Division of receipts and payment of expenses (Scottish Cup).'

Sign of the times: The Scottish giants are in desperate need of investment

Sign of the times: The Scottish giants are in desperate need of investment

Rangers have not submitted audited accounts, required by the end of last year.

The SFA have also issued a notice of complaint against Rangers for failure to pay Dundee United cash owed from their William Hill Scottish Cup tie on February 5. They have set March 29 as the principal hearing date and warned Rangers they face disciplinary action if the money is not paid.

Regan said: 'We have sent a letter to the Rangers administrators, Duff and Phelps, advising them that failure to pay monies owed to another member constitutes a breach of the cup competition rules.

'Consequently, the club faces disciplinary action unless they make payments due to Dundee United from their recent William Hill Scottish Cup tie.'

Rangers joint-administrator Paul Clark said: 'We note the findings and announcement by the Scottish Football Association.

'We look forward to stating the club's case to the Judicial Panel.

'In broad terms, we believe there are mitigating factors and we hope to demonstrate the distinction between the club and the actions of any individuals.'

Regan confirmed the SFA have no plans just now to investigate allegations that Rangers made undisclosed payments to players during the Murray era because the Scottish Premier League have already launched a probe of their own.

Tough job: Rangers manager Ally McCoist leaves Murray Park on Thursday

Tough job: Rangers manager Ally McCoist leaves Murray Park on Thursday

Former Ibrox director Hugh Adam claimed in a national newspaper last week that some payments were not included in official contracts that were registered with the SPL.

The payments allegedly left out of official contracts centred on the use of Employee Benefit Trusts, which were the subject of a tax tribunal in January.

Rangers are still awaiting the outcome of the case, regarding offshore payments made from 2001-10, and which could cost the club up to 49million.

Regan said: 'I would like to clarify the situation relating to possible non-disclosure of payments to players, and in particular the Employee Benefit Trust.

'Having noted the Scottish Premier League's intention to investigate this matter, the board has decided to allow the SPL to complete this process, given our potential status as the appellate body.

'We retain our position until such time as the SPL's investigation is concluded.'

Rangers investigated by SFA over Hugh Adam claims

Rangers investigated by SFA over payment claims from Adam

The Scottish Football Association have confirmed they will investigate claims made by former Rangers director Hugh Adam that payments made to players were not disclosed to the football governing body.

Adam claimed in a newspaper story on Friday that some payments had been excluded from contracts lodged with the SFA.

The SFA are already conducting an independent enquiry into the activities of Rangers and whether there have been any potential breaches of their articles of association.

Testing times: Rangers manager Ally McCoist

Testing times: Rangers manager Ally McCoist

That was announced on February 17 – three days after the Scottish champions were forced into administration.

The SFA said at the time attempts to obtain information relating to their 'fit and proper person' requirement – regarding owner Craig Whyte – had been restricted by the club solicitors' failure to share information.

And in a statement, SFA chief executive Stewart Regan provided an update on the progress of the inquiry, chaired by Lord Nimmo Smith.

He said: 'We are now in the final stages of our independent inquiry into the situation concerning Rangers FC.

'The report by The Right Honourable Lord Nimmo Smith is expected to be completed next week and will go to a Special Board Meeting for consideration.

Bleak future: The Ibrox club are battling for survival

Bleak future: The Ibrox club are battling for survival

'It would be inappropriate to make any further comment at this stage in relation to the details gleaned from the inquiry, the potential contents of the report or any possible sanctions.

'We are, however, aware of the most recent allegations made against Rangers FC today by a former director of the club.

'We shall investigate this matter thoroughly before making any further comment.'

Rangers are awaiting the verdict of a tax tribunal which could cost the club around 49million if they lose the case.

The HMRC case centres around the use of employee benefits trusts (EBTs) which were in place before Whyte took over from Sir David Murray as owner last May.