Trial date set for former Rangers owner Craig Whyte

Craig Whyte leaves a previous court appearance in Edinburgh. Picture: HeMedia

Craig Whyte leaves a previous court appearance in Edinburgh. Picture: HeMedia

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FORMER Rangers owner Craig Whyte could be set to stand trial next year over an alleged fraudulent takeover of the Ibrox club.

Whyte today appeared for a hearing at the High Court in Glasgow.

The 45 year-old faces two charges – one of fraud and a second allegation under the Companies Act.

The first accusation claims Whyte obtained a “majority and controlling stake” in Rangers “by fraud”.

The charge dates between May 2010 and May 2011 listing various locations including Ibrox Stadium, Murray Park as well as “addresses meantime unknown” in Monaco and France.

It is said Whyte and his representatives did pretend to then Rangers owner Sir David Murray and others that “funds were available” to make all stipulated payments.

It is claimed “resources necessary” were available to meet a number of “obligations” including £5m for “the playing squad”.

The second charge under the Companies Act centres on an £18m payment in connection with the takeover.

Whyte – who entered no plea - was once again represented by Donald Findlay QC.

Alex Prentice QC is now heading the prosecution team in the case.

Mr Prentice told the hearing: “The Lord Advocate asked that I step in...that is what I will do.”

The court heard a trial – which could last up to 12 weeks – has been provisionally set for April next year in Glasgow.

But, a two-day hearing will take place before then in December.

Whyte’s bail was continued meantime.

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