Category Archives: Revenue and Customs & Anor v Ben Nevis (Holdings) Ltd & Ors

South Africa’s Tax Authorities v Dave King – Now In the High Court in London

I was looking, at the inadvertent prompting of Iain, one of the Rangers supporting commenters on the blog, at the history of Rangers rights and share issues.

I was diverted, as I often am. This time it was by a mention in the Murray International publicity about the £53 million share issue in Rangers Football Club plc in 2000 as follows:-

“Of the £32.3 million, the Murray Group is investing £9.3 million with new investment of approximately £20 million from Ben Nevis Holdings, a company associated with Dave King, a successful Scottish businessman based in South Africa.”

I have written about Mr King and his tax issues with the South African authorities before.

However a recently reported case from the Court of Chancery in England is of interest, both to tax practitioners, but also to those with an historical interest in the “fit and proper” person test in Scottish football.

The case of Revenue and Customs & Anor v Ben Nevis (Holdings) Ltd & Ors [2012] EWHC 1807 (Ch) was decided on 20 July 2012. The decision can be found here.

The case sheds an interesting light on some of Mr King’s dealings and history, and we see the vigorous defence being put up by his lawyers, no part of which is that he does not owe the money!

The Opinion details the allegations against Mr King in detail, and the remarkable fact that, as mentioned above, he invested £20 million in Rangers at a time a tax bill eleven times that size was being run up. If it was an effort at concealing funds, as I am sure it was not, then it failed – firstly because it was done in plain view and secondly because the £20 million of shares are worthless.

However, at no time did the raft of allegations against Mr King affect his position as a director of Rangers Football Club plc, nor indeed his status as a fit and proper person to be a company director.

Be warned – there is a lot of technical tax, jurisdiction and procedure stuff to follow, and the bits about Mr King are near the top. Continue reading

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