Mrs Kim Whyte’s case against Craig Whyte, the Rangers owner, is due back in court tomorrow (8th February).
The link to the relevant page of the court lists is here. Scroll half way down and you will see it listed as a “Starred motion”. One hour has been allocated for the hearing.
Publicity elsewhere has suggested that this is an aliment case. Aliment is the Scottish legal term for maintenance payments.
A one hour hearing would suggest that there will be some detailed argument tomorrow. This might be in connection with an application for an order for interim aliment, or it could be an application by either party seeking production of relevant documents by the other.
One wonders if counsel for Mrs Whyte might make reference to the interview between Tome English and Mr Whyte, published by the Scotland on Sunday on 5th February.
“Q: You say you lodged £28m in a bank account as proof of funds during the negotiating process?
A: I think it was closer to £33m actually.
Q: Your own money from your own personal wealth?
A: Yes, that was done as far back as November 2010.
Q: Can you prove it?
A: I can, yes.”
Mind you, it is followed closely by:-
“I don’t talk about my personal wealth to anybody…”
The Sun on 2nd February also quoted from an interview with Mr Whyte:-
“I have a personal commitment of £25m in Rangers and I have never taken a penny out of the club.
“I don’t take expenses and I travel on my own coin — unlike those who are sniping in the background.”
So, if Mr Whyte is not taking anything, neither expenses nor salary, from Rangers, then he might not be ordered to pay any aliment, subject of course to what income he derives from his other successful companies.
On the other hand, if he was able to put “closer to £33 million” from his own personal wealth into a bank during negotiations, and is not deriving an income from it, Mrs Whyte’s counsel could suggest that was (a) a deliberate attempt to lower his income and (b) a man with that wealth could well afford aliment for his wife, even if he is not taking an income from Rangers just now.
Tomorrow’s hearing is by way of legal argument. Neither party would be required to give evidence, nor would either be expected to be in attendance. Autograph hunters therefore need not attend at the Court of Session tomorrow.
NB For the avoidance of doubt, my comments above are NOT intended to imply that Mr Whyte has taken steps to minimise his income – instead I am speculating about possible approaches should the public statements turn out to be accurate.