SPL commission begins Rangers probe

11 September 2012 05:17

The initial meeting of the commission set up by the Scottish Premier League to investigate the company that formerly ran Rangers began on Tuesday morning at Hampden.

Representatives of the Ibrox club were not in attendance after newco chief executive Charles Green argued the SPL has no jurisdiction, following Rangers' demotion to the Irn-Bru Third Division.

A source told Press Association Sport that the hearing began at 10am, as the three-man panel chaired by Lord Nimmo Smith steps up its investigation into transactions from the Employee Benefit Trust (EBT) scheme run by former Rangers owner Sir David Murray.

The meeting was due to finish around 6pm as Scotland host a World Cup qualifier against Macedonia at the national stadium on Tuesday night. The commission will make use Wednesday's scheduled second day of talks if required.

Rangers could be stripped of league titles if found guilty of making undeclared payments to players between 2000 and 2011.

Green, whose company bought the business and assets of the soon-to-be-liquidated Rangers for £5.5million in June, revealed on Monday that the Govan club were snubbing the hearings.

He said: "Neither the SPL, nor its commission, has any legal power or authority over the club because it is not in the SPL. This should have been done when the SPL had jurisdiction, and they didn't do it.

"You are allowed to have an EBT, you have to disclose it, and of course there is a whole raft of information that when these EBTs were being used they were disclosed.

"They were in the accounts, it's public knowledge, Rangers were a public company, you can go on the internet and see the disclosures."

Green added more intrigue to the issue when he claimed in a BBC Radio Scotland interview that "more than two" SPL clubs have used EBTs but would "rather not say" who they were, before adding: "I have put my hand up and they should do the same."

Source: PA