HMRC ruling – Scottish football and its ‘selective’ hearing


When news broke today that HMRC had won their third appeal against Rangers’ original BTC victory, it is safe to say everyone in Scotland not of an Ibrox persuasion had something of a meltdown in glee. Those “BIG BAD RANJURS WILL PAY” was the general theme, with overriding joy at the result of this appeal.

The curiosity remains though why these fair-minded and law-abiding souls have ignored every other ruling in this sordid soap opera.

Oh, I know: because they did not like what they heard.

2012 – Rangers win the BTC. Scottish football screams ‘fix’.

2012 – Lord Nimmo Smith rules Rangers are the same club. Scottish football screams ‘fix’.

2012 – Uefa confirm Rangers are the same club. Scottish football screams ‘fix’.

2012 – Fifa confirm Rangers are the same club. Scottish football screams ‘fix’.

2012 – The ECA confirm Rangers are the same club. Scottish football screams ‘fix’.

2012 – The SFA rule Rangers are the same club. Scottish football starts to froth.

2012 – HMRC lose their appeal over the BTC. Scottish football foams.

2014 – HMRC lose their second appeal over BTC. Scottish football goes red in the face.

2015 – SPFL confirms Rangers are the same club. Scottish football gets placed in a straight jacket.

So…all these authorities and bodies ruling in favour of Rangers. Scottish football ignores every single one of them.

Today, HMRC won its third appeal – NOW Scottish football is listening.

Suddenly the bodies which were ignored now get Scottish football’s ear simply because it likes what it hears.

Today’s ruling was another stage in the long saga of this appeal soap opera – it was more opinions from more judges who, like all before them, must be respected and they are entitled to their conclusion. Rangers fans can respect these opinions, even if we disagree with them, and the case will presumably go to the Supreme Court.

But it is a crying pity Scottish football has not listened to or respected a single ruling until it was one it liked.

Is this really a fair minded society?

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  1. its our own fault we gave these low life too much power in society whuile we sat back twiddling our thumbs

    • As far as Rangers FC is concerned it is irrelevant. It was the owners of the then football Club, Sir David Murray and his Company, that operated the EBT Scheme. I wonder how many moans and groans there will be from the Underclasses about Murray. Few I suspect. They are only interested in the Rangers. Better they concentrate on their own clubs and their histories although if they are from the East End of Glasgow they will do anything to deflect from their sordid past!

  2. Great article and sums up the situation in a nut shell. I honestly believe if we were an English club there would be none of this furore.

  3. There's obviously an element of doubt about the legality of the whole EBT fiasco. It's all down to opinions from our different learned friends. Who's to say that this latest ruling is the correct one? As you say no doubt the rest of Scottish Football thinks it is but should we be surprised at this?

  4. In the original ruling the HMRC QC accepted that the loan documents were legal,now "common sense" has more clout in law than legal documents.This must be appealed

  5. I would suspect the vast majority of Rangers supporters concur with your article. The irrelevance of other Scottish football fans to me is limitless. We will win through in the end, no matter how long. The oddity is that how do the so called judges in the previous appeals feel? To be summarily dismissed and overruled is highly embarrassing. Do they care? No. Do we care? No. Who cares? I suspect we all know. Dismiss them with the contempt they deserve.

  6. Never should have been the need for 2 appeals.

    It's not common sense that the rule here it's the law of the land.

    Have you any doubts that the players, and others, were being paid for anything other than football services therefore the payments were subject to tax and NI, just like mine and your income.

  7. HMRC didn't pursue any of the English Premiere teams also used the same vehicle because they knew if they lost the original ruling there was not going to be a chance of appeal. However with us they could appeal as many times as they liked until they. Got a ruling in their favour.

  8. I this the final decision, how many times can it be appealed. It seems to me that it is appealed until HMRC got their decision. I'm not saying what happened with EBT is right but I have never heard of any other decision being appealed so many times.

    • Rangers were never involved in any others and our enemies, (and there are many in Scotland these days), wouldn't have given up until they won or died of old age. Sadly they won what is a meaningless victory but such as they are they will rejoice in this. Sad irrelevant people that they are.

  9. There is one more Level of appeal which HMRC would have gone to if they had not been successful

    BDO on behalf of old co creditors could appeal the decision but would have to weigh the chances of success against the cost of the appeal.

    The ruling will scupper any possibility of King' s crazy idea to revive OC because the HMRC debt will be added to the pile and reduce the payout to creditors to pennies.

  10. It seems odd that Rangers are still being pursued over the EBT affair while another Glasgow club has walked away Scot free. Celtic confirmed on their own website that Juninho had exactly the same agreement, the difference given by the authorities being that he received it after he left the club !!! What difference does that make ? He still got it and knew he was getting while still with the club. Seems like one law for one club and a different law for another. Further proof, if any were needed, that the powers that be have got it in for Rangers.

  11. An absolute farce we've won 2 out of the 3 decisions so in my opinion that 2 not guiltys to 1 guilty so are hmrc going to keep goin till its 3 guiltys to 2 not then surely we ve got the right of appeal wer does it stop. When it was 2 not guiltys that shud have been that if hmrc won their first appeal fair doos it goes too a 2nd n if who ever won then finish that the decision, when it cums to us everyone doesn't seem too stop till they've finished us of n jumpin on our grave.the end end of the day gers done something that was made legal by the government n their was no cap on the amount of money you cud do it with plus clubs all over the country have done by its U.S. They want black list unbelievable kick kick kick by we will fight on no surrender n that goes for Mike. Ashley aswell. Let's fight together for this great club. WATP

  12. How can Celtic get away with having an EBT for Juninho but Rangers are pilloried for doing the same ? This smacks of one rule for one club and a different rule for another. Proof, if any were needed, that the powers that be have it in for Rangers.

  13. Just hope we aren't stripped of titles after this ruling, at the end of the day 11 men sweated blood to win these trophies and it wouldn't be fair on them or us fans

  14. Isn't this simple? Ebts are loans so the recipients never paid tax on them, ok, the recipients should now pay back those loans. Most were and still are multi millionaires I would think.

  15. It must be sad being a Celtic fan. Hoping Rangers are stripped of titles. That is the only way you will ever come near us. I would take what has happened to us these past few years 100 times again than have the seedy past that their club has hanging over them.

    • When did they ever win things fairly. They are a shower of gypsies, tramps and thieves. Have even stolen their Football Anthems from the two Merseyside Clubs although the don't shout too much about an obvious part of their history.

  16. Yes folks it's a timplosion –all the usual suspects from the east end are now to the fore with the appalling Tom English being chief cheer leader —-l don't care —l just go and watch the game —the bile and hatred is mind numbing and they are all welcome to there warped agendas –it really doesn't matter a jot

  17. Why is all the talk of Rangers being liable for the Tax bill.? If my employer does not collect the correct PAYE from me, it is still me as an individual who is liable to pay the tax, not my employer! Difference from the Subsequent saga where the PAYE was collected, but not paid to HMRC

  18. This is bad news for us,we do not even know if our club has a owner if murry sold it to white who sold it on to green but white may never have bought the club in the first place?.sad day if it takes us back down to murry still owning the club and the TAX man moves in and i asked some one how that work and they told me they could if the club was never sold by legal means.

    • It's a total red herring no one is going to undo the sale but the main actors are about to go on restricted diets and loss of mobility

  19. Celtic paid back juninio EBT as soon as hmrc asked for it as they were told it was wrong, that is the difference. Rangers decided to fight against it rather than pay what hmrc wanted.

    • The amount Rangers owed couldn't be paid back at that time. The sum was too great. I believe Murray offered 10 million as a sttlement which HMRC rejected.
      Apparently the settled with many parties at the time. Some who owed small amounts repaid in full, others repaid an agreed amount. Obviously we can't know how the other settlements compared to Rangers offer.
      So Rangers didn't 'decide' to fight. They tried to settle. When it was rejected they had no other option.
      One of the big questions that remain unanswered is "why did it take so many years before HMRC decided that EBTs were not a legitimate mechanism to avoid tax"?
      They would have been on Rangers books, and those of, perhaps, hundreds of other companies for years before they decided to ask for tax payments on them.
      It looks like they have allowed companies to operate a scheme for a good number of years. A scheme covered by tax regulations, the legality of which was ambiguous enough for two hearings to declare it legal.
      This latest finding is an interpretation that, effectively, borders on retrospective legislation.

  20. I don't know the age of contributors here but the mighty Selic had to be threatened with legal action to install computerised turnstiles in the eighties as this would put an end to the Kelly/white gate money scam —the organisation that threatened them was Glasgow district council so it really must have been blatant as they are all at parkhead on any given Saturday .lt makes me angry when people ignore what is effectively grand larceny from one lot but when the tedds enter in to what was deemed at the time a legal tax avoidance scheme they are pilloried for it .

    • I've been saying that for years about the gate money scam they had going in 60's,70's and 80's.Seems it was fine then to line your pockets without ponying up for the taxman but not today as it's not the same club benefitting from this legal scheme !!

  21. While it was shady at the time it is admitted that it was not illegal. HMRC changed the rules and then BACK DATED them to cover their own incompetence. Hardly an honourable act.
    That said I feel that RFC and Murray knew they were close to the wind. For me as a season holder this was not honourable either.
    It is now boring

    • whatever…..the barstewards are going to get there way no matter what we say….let it go bears…we are still the people!!!

  22. EBT's are perfectly legal as long as you pay tax on them
    Celtic were advised by a tax consultant on this and paid the Tax
    Rangers did not pay the tax and were advised by a dodgy Friend of David Murray. He is your enemy David Murray David Murray never put penny of his own money into Rangers and actually took 6m out tax free. He is your biggest crook and the reason for all the troubles of honest fans

  23. how many times those old farts are going to overturn the original decision….who cares….we are the people…no one fucks with the gers and gets the best of us….lets ignore this latest attack….who the fuck are they?nothing to be recognized except by there pals in ireland

    • I care,if they keep overturning the original decision the penny will drop that Sir David Murray still owns the club if white is found guilty of setting up a fraudulent scheme to buy Glasgow Rangers then he does not own Rangers and he could never have sold Rangers to anyone else and the Rangers football club would be returned to its rightful owner,they could run with this to court,and i fear they may go down this road to get there money back.any one in here know what the LAW is on some thing like this ease my fears.

  24. Is it true or official that HMRC are going make a legal case that our club was not sold to/or bought by Craig White by legal means but by fraudulent takeover of the Ibrox and that makes S-D-Murray still owner of Ibrox?.we are done for i can feel this now, HMRC are going go down this road now we are now in the darkest days in Rangers history and our future is now in the hands of HMRC and in how much do they want there this right

  25. As a Celtic fan I want nothing to do with the tainted titles.

    I do however want an asterisk placed in the history books with a note saying that these titles and cups are being withheld because of financial doping carried out by Glasgow Rangers for over a decade

    If you are in the Alex Rae school of thought that at the end of the day it was just eleven against eleven, then you are beyond help.

    Alex is not a stupid man, he knows fine well that the 11 in the blue strips would have, in the main, been inferior players and not those attracted by the prospect of tax free payments.

    • I hope you would also be willing to accept that celtic should be stripped of all titles going back to the beginning of the child abuse cover up

  26. This decision must be appealed the present judgement completely ignores the fact that the loan documents were accepted to be legal by the HMRC in the FTTT

    Page 44 paragraph 191

    Further, the legal effect of the trust structure and loans (all of which, it was conceded, were not in law a sham)

    Legal loan documents not even mentioned in the present judgement

  27. Just hope all this shit doesn't effect the team, seems everyone hates Rangers more now than ever, let's all stand as one WATP

  28. You shouldn't be on here anyway you fucking Celtic prick so do one you weirdo, Hate Martin onNeill but give the man some respect he did interview on Belfast tv and stated that he had good time at Celtic but Rangers did better and it was11 against 11 and he loved his time at Celtic, hate him still but not as much as I did

  29. Feel Murray has fucked us fans over and in hindsight he's a crook but it was 11 against 11 take these titles away from us but it's always ours, the 11 men on the pitch sweated blood Cooper laudrup albertz and Gascoigne, is it have a go at Rangers week again? Find and fine Murray and leave us alone, so wish we could move south and get away from all this negative sceptic shit WATP

  30. Is there any chance Rangers can go into Irish league? Would fuck reagon up and his plans with the Sfa to keep fucking us over , reckon we should push it fellow bears or try and broker a deal to come down south and at least we will get a level thought,. Scottish football craves our money but fucks us over let's fuck them over and move out of the Scottish leagues WATP

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