THE two administrators of Rangers FC who were the victims of malicious prosecution by the Crown have been paid more than £20m, according to an insider.
David Whitehouse and Paul Clark won an admission in court by the Lord Advocate, James Wolffe QC, that they had been maliciously prosecuted over their involvement in the administration of the then incarnation of Rangers which was eventually liquidated.
They had previously been awarded interim payments and had settled out of court with Police Scotland for six figure sums.
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The Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) is thought to have accepted the two men’s evidence as to the damage done to their reputation and standing.
The National can reveal that the Lord Advocate is to address the Scottish Parliament on the matter, and there is concern in Scottish Government circles as to where the money will be found to pay the compensation which sources close to Whitehouse and Clark say was £21m in total, plus a further £3m in legal expenses.
“The money is in their bank accounts,” said the insider. “All they want now is a proper public apology.”
Further admitted cases of malicious prosecution are still to be resolved with Charles Green, former chief executive of Rangers, and former commercial director Imran Ahmad both set to receive compensation likely to run into eight figures in total.
Former justice secretary Kenny MacAskill last year called last year for an inquiry into the malicious prosecutions “scandal”. Told by The National of the figures already paid he asked where the money would come from “in these times of crisis”.
MacAskill stated: “This has caused consternation, and even anger, both within the service and in the police where rumour has it that it’s a position strongly disagreed with.
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“The cost to the public purse will be massive but the reputational damage to the Crown Office is incalculable.”
Asked to confirm the payments, COPFS said: “The cases are still before the court and in order to respect the processes underway we will not comment at this time. The Lord Advocate has made clear that he will support appropriate public accountability and intends to make a statement to the Scottish Parliament in due course.”
A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “It would not be appropriate for the Scottish Ministers to comment.”