Tory treasurer Malcolm Scott hit with cash curbs

Malcolm Scott. Picture: Jane Barlow
Malcolm Scott. Picture: Jane Barlow
Have your say

A BANKRUPT tycoon and former Scottish Tories treasurer who once lent Prime Minister David Cameron and Foreign Secretary William Hague his private jet has had his financial activities restricted for more than five years after officials ruled that he was guilty of “serious misbehaviour” during his bankruptcy.

Malcolm Scott, of Bridge of Weir, was declared bankrupt in 2012 following the collapse of his grain and property empire.

But the Scottish Government’s Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB) found that he had inaccurately reported items had been stolen from his home, which were instead sold at auction. He had also failed to account for the proceeds of the sale of a Range Rover or declare his ownership of a £36,000 speedboat.

Following an application by the AiB, Sheriff William Holligan, sitting at Edinburgh Sheriff Court, made a Bankruptcy Restrictions Order in respect of Mr Scott, 51, for a period of five and a half years.

The order will prohibit former Fettes pupil Mr Scott from acting as a company director and from obtaining credit of over £500 – or of any amount if he already has debts of £1,000 or more – without disclosing his status to the credit provider.

He will also not be allowed to be nominated, elected or hold office as a member of a local authority.

Richard Dennis, chief executive of the AiB, said: “The Accountant in Bankruptcy will investigate and will take action against those who seek to subvert the bankruptcy process. The sheriff has agreed with us that Mr Scott sought to subvert the process during his bankruptcy.”

He added: “These restrictions are necessary to alert potential future creditors and employers to the inappropriate behaviour we have identified.”

The court also found that Mr Scott had failed to declare that he had transferred £9,000 of shares which could have been sold by his trustee – Blair Nimmo of KMPG – to benefit Mr Scott’s creditors.

He also did not declare to his trustee other assets he owned, including fishing rights, a wine collection and various interests in the Bahamas, estimated to be worth around £200,000.

Mr Scott, who donated at least £1.6 million to the Conservatives and was the Scottish party’s treasurer, was previously sequestered – the Scottish term for bankruptcy – owing £8m to his creditors.

He was forced to sell his luxury nine-bedroomed mansion, Hillfield House in Kirknewton, West Lothian, which included a swimming pool, tennis court and gym.

Mr Scott had previously claimed in court that Hillfield House had been “ransacked” before his bankruptcy during a burglary. His wife Rona confirmed the robbery in court, but said the house had not been “trashed in any way”.

He hosted large banquets at the house where guests are believed to have included former defence secretary Liam Fox.

A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives said: “Mr Scott has nothing to do with the party and hasn’t for several years. These are personal matters entirely for him.”