Rangers takeover: Administrators react to ‘defamatory’ BBC documentary

David Whitehouse (L) and Paul Clark of Duff and Phelps. Picture: Robert Perry
David Whitehouse (L) and Paul Clark of Duff and Phelps. Picture: Robert Perry
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PAUL Clark, of administrators Duff and Phelps, has tonight issued a statement in reaction to the documentary ‘Rangers: The Men Who Sold the Jerseys’, shown on BBC1 this evening.

Mr Clark, joint administrator along with David Whitehouse, said: “The allegations made in tonight’s programme against Duff and Phelps are untrue, a distortion of the facts and highly defamatory. Discussions are already underway with our solicitors with a view to bringing legal proceedings against the BBC.

“We are also hugely disappointed with the irresponsible comments made by Mr Roger Isaacs who is clearly not in possession of the facts.

“We made a number of offers to assist the BBC in order they would not make the fundamental errors broadcast this evening and for some inexplicable reason the reporter Mark Daly declined these.

“We had also hoped to give interviews stating our case on camera but received strong legal advice against this course of action, bearing in mind the legal proceedings Duff and Phelps have raised against Collyer Bristow. The BBC were informed in writing from our solicitors.

“We did however provide the BBC with lengthy written statements stating our position and we are publishing these on the Rangers website.

“In broad terms Mr Daly failed miserably to understand the difference between working capital arrangements for the Club and acquisition funding.”

David Grier, said: “I categorically deny that at the time of the Craig Whyte takeover of Rangers, I had any knowledge that funds from Ticketus were being used to acquire the Club. This accusation is wrong, highly defamatory and betrays a lack of understanding of the facts.

“Neither I nor any of my colleagues at MCR provided any professional assistance to Liberty, Wavetower or Craig Whyte, in raising funds, performing financial due diligence, structuring or agreeing the terms of the purchase of the Club from the Murray Group.

“Financial due diligence and other work was provided by Saffery Champness, a firm of chartered accountants who specialise in this area and our primary role was to provide assistance to Liberty Capital in negotiating a settlement and assignment of the debt due to Lloyds Bank.

“The reality is that when my concerns about the use of Ticketus funding crystallised over the summer of 2011, I took immediate steps to raise these concerns with controlling directors of Rangers and HMRC.

“The email referred to in tonight’s programme to Ticketus dated 19 April 2011 mentions the possibility of raising funds for working capital but does not provide any information of quantum or terms of such a proposal. To suggest this email establishes an awareness of Ticketus providing acquisition funding is absurd and ridiculous.

“Once we discovered the full extent of the funding relationship between Ticketus, Liberty Capital and the club, we took immediate steps to raise our concern with controlling directors of Rangers and HMRC.”

Mr Clark said the administrators would not comment on the BBC’s EBT allegations while the first tier tax tribunal was still active.