Campbell Ogilvie

Campbell Ogilvie is already a man of quite some distinction.  However, his list of accomplishments might be about to become a bit longer.  It appears that he has sat on the board of directors of not just one SPL club entangled in highly dubious tax schemes, but two.  Heart of Midlothian FC look likely to be the next shoe to drop as football’s culture of thinking that it is above paying taxes starts to unwind.

Ogilvie, the current SFA Vice-President and heir apparent to George Peat’s job of President, is going to have quite the CV by the time he hangs up his pinstripes.  Not only was he a director of Rangers FC when the EBT scheme was first introduced, but he was also the company secretary.  This latter role gave him additional responsibility for ensuring statutory compliance for The Rangers Football Club plc.  So while some Rangers directors, like John Greig, might have a claim that their position was symbolic, and they did not understand what was happening or what their responsibilities as a director are, it will be difficult for Mr. Ogilvie to do likewise.   As a man with substantial experience and training, he will find it difficult to claim that he did not know or understand what was happening.  (He may try anyway).

However, Ogilvie seems likely to find himself in the unique position of being at the center of yet another tax avoidance/evasion storm.  On leaving Rangers in 2005, Ogilvie joined the board of Heart of Midlothian FC, and in 2008 became managing director of the Edinburgh club.  A source has contacted me with the story that the Scottish Professional Footballers Association (SPFA) has made a complaint about employment practices at Hearts. This came to light when a Hearts player applied for a mortgage.  When presenting his salary advice, it was clear that he was on a rate close to the UK minimum wage. The player naively explained that he had lots of money, but that it was all paid overseas.  The SPFA would obviously have concerns that Scottish players will appear expensive in an era of 50% marginal tax rates compared to low-tax (or no-tax?) foreign players.  This raises a few questions: How many players are involved? How long have such practices been in effect? Are there players who have not been registered for tax at all in the UK? The scale of the Hearts problem is not yet fully known.  If this has been standard practice over an extended number of years, then the bills, interest, and penalties could also be of a magnitude that could put the existence of Hearts at risk unless Mr. Romanov decides to dig deep into his personal reserves.

Once could be just a mistake.  Twice looks very careless.
Scottish football supporters, as well as SFA member clubs, have a right to know “what did Campbell Ogilvie know, and when did he know it?”

It appears that one of two situations must exist: either Campbell Ogilvie knew of, and approved of, two high-risk / illegal tax strategies or he has failed in his responsibilities as a company director at two major Scottish football clubs.  Does Mr. Ogilvie have a casual disregard for the law or is he just an ignorant puppet dancing on the strings of charismatic impresarios?  Either way, it would be a matter of major concern to all those with an interest in Scottish football if either is true.  If there is another explanation for why he has had such a knack of being on the wrong boards at the wrong times, then Scottish football supporters need to be told.

Did Ogilvie bring dubious practices to Hearts from Rangers or was he an innocent bystander at both clubs?
Did Rangers register all of their overseas players for UK tax?

In light of his unique experience with two of the three largest football clubs in Scotland sliding to the edge of darkness, perhaps Celtic supporters should not be so concerned about Ogilvie inheriting the job of SFA President.  Given recent statements about the need to ‘pull down the walls’ and to rebuild the SFA from the ground up, who would be better qualified to at least bring about the first part?

About rangerstaxcase
I have information on Rangers' tax case, and I will use this blog to provide the details of what Rangers FC have done, why it was illegal, and what the implications for what was (updated) one of the largest football clubs in Britain.

254 Responses to Campbell Ogilvie

  1. Sir Dirty Money says:

    Live bombs were sent to Neil Lennon, Paul Mcbride and Labour politician Trish Godman this Friday. Se Phil Mac’s site.

  2. Mark Dickson says:

    I think Celtic and their fans hopes for SFA reconstruction or a clearout are probably in line to be disappointed. I think that Ogilvie and Regan and Allan etc will modernise the procedures and in view of legal challenges completely rewrite the SFA rule-book to limit future legal challenges etc so these will be some positive achievements but I think Celts & Gers will still complain and convince themselves that so & so in this job or that position is pro-hun/tim and their decisions and influence reflect old biases.

  3. Slimshady says:

    My take on today’s events:-

    Hmm, all the big guns yesterday were saying deal done in next 24 hours (albeit they had been saying that for weeks). Tom English, Jim Traynor, St Hugh of Keevins, Ewan Murray (bless him), David Leggat, I’m sure even old Darryl Rightfoot-Broadfoot was sending celebratory emails round the SFA offices on Monday afternoon (hopefully minus any attachments)

    How did they get it SO wrong? Let’s look at the runners and riders…..

    Sir David Murray – still spinning in his lair – trying to make everyone else look like the bad guys; Whyte’s been spun against, so has King, so has AJ, even dear old Chick Young has been made out to be a cross between Gadaffi and Lord John Reid; why, if necessary, to preserve the blessedness & sanctity of SDM even dear old Sir No-Name & the fragrant Coisty (no bad word ever crossed his lips) may eventually have to take one for the gipper

    Alistair Johnson ; on 1 April this “top businessman” pronounced the deal ready to be done, Murray had agreed, Lloyds had agreed etc, “deal done within next 48 hours…” The laptop loyal licked it up, swallowed it whole and regurgitated it for everyone’s delectation.

    And yet today AJ says he only saw the Whyte cashflows last week. So how could he have pronounced himself so (self-) satisfied 3 weeks ago when he hadn’t even seen the figures? What kind of a chairman of the Board is this man? Does he not know his fiduciary duties? Or had he actually seen the cashflows and just not understood them?
    How can anyone now believe a word this man says?

    Red Whyte & Who –
    never really a serious player;
    persuaded by others (principally Ellis & some Channel Islands advisers) to be the stalking horse,
    does not have the liquid wherewithal,
    a lot of his apparent wealth (unproven to most) apparently materialised when he was offshore;
    would such a publicity-shy person really risk bringing it back onshore, directly or indirectly, and hoist another red rag (to an HMRC bull) to fly alongside the Union Flag?
    why he probably couldn’t even sing you a chorus of The Billy Boys even if he was allowed to.

    The Director who wants to mount a bid – appears to have used information given to him as a director, by a supposedly potential purchaser, to start mounting his own, counter bid; he should have stood down from the board before considering acting in that way. I wonder if his lawyers read the 2006 Companies Act to him in bed at night? Seemingly not……

    Dave King – alleged to have had some difficulty filling in his tax returns correctly over a number of years; (does anyone see a pattern here?) Yet seems to have suddenly become flush with cash…hmm

    RFC – Alistair Johnston will be raging tonight – the Gers were not supposed to win; a plucky loss to the Arabs, a hard fought draw against Celtic this weekend and he could have decently put the club into administration next week, allowing The Interested Director to bid low and win.
    But someone forgot to tell Willie “5th” Collum and, as part of the Scottish referees’ “Win one for Wattie” campaign, he just did what was expected of him (albeit going slightly OTT with three red cards and three penalties).

    Truly this is a mess and yet tonight all the radio numpties of day spent most of the time musing on “plan B”.
    Criticism was there none – just sympathy for all of the players in this farce.

    Can you imagine if this had happened to another (any other?) football club?
    “seriously misled the fans, incompetent, must resign, out of his depth, embarrassing, mickey-mouse club, broken crest, laughing stock of the football and business world etc. ”

    This club is going into administration and sooner than most think. There will be a lot of pressure on the Tribunal to arrive at and publish their decision as soon as possible. But that shouldn’t be difficult.

    The template is already there in the Aberdeen Asset Management judgement another first tier tribunal handed down in January 2011; same initial advisers, identical schemes, same offshore administrators, same seemingly shonky implementation…

    Just multiply the amounts of tax & NI involved by a factor of 9 or 10.

  4. Gary says:

    Why is it when celtic fans are met by someone who doesn’t agree they accuse them of being Rangers fans? Over 200 comments on this page now and its descended into bickering and h*n calling. Can see why RTC has took a leave of absence.

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