Dave King, the man who wants to own Rangers FC, hasn’t been having it all his own way recently.
In October last year the judgement of North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria stated that King was a “glib and shameless liar.”
Last week the company “Ben Nevis” dropped their appeal against the contention by the South African Revenue Service (SARS) that the company and Dave King were, effectively, one and the same.
With this appear dropped SARS then made application to go after Ben Nevis for the millions they claim that King owes in unpaid taxes and penalties.
SARS is chasing Ben Nevis for around two-thirds of the tax debt and King personally for the rest.
The total amount is thought to be around £250 million.
This latest ruling is one in a series over the past few years designed to straighten out who owns and owes what.
The appellant in the latest case is Ben Nevis.
Technically, Ben Nevis is run by trustees who do not include King and, as of last month, he was insisting that he was not involved.
However, last year’s judgment ruled that, in fact, Ben Nevis and King were the same entity.
“The question is whether in law X [King] was acting as the appellant [Ben Nevis] when he made default in making the returns. Although he was not an officer of the appellant and he held no other formal position which would normally entitle him to act on its behalf he clearly controlled the appellant as if he was its managing director and was acting with all the powers of the board.”
So by dropping its appeal against that judgment, Ben Nevis is accepting that they can’t win that case.
An appeal against the majority of the tax debt was dismissed last October.
In its devastating judgment, the court said King “ has no respect for the truth and does not hesitate to lie…if he thinks it will be to his advantage.
“He is a mendacious witness whose evidence should not be accepted on any issue unless it is supported by documents or other objective evidence.
“In our assessment he is a glib and shameless liar.”
Last Friday, a hearing in Pretoria was told that a further legal challenge by Ben Nevis had now been dropped, allowing the taxman to raise an application to collect the cash.
Dave King strenously denies that the Ben Nevis company, registered in the British Virgin Islands, has anything to do with him.
The SARS’ case partly relied on emails uncovered at the Bank of Bermuda in 2001.
One stated: “Apparently DK wishes to ‘dismantle’ current structure and transfer the assets of Ben Nevis into a new company, as the ‘tax authorities are chasing him’.”
Another stated: “We are restructuring Ben Nevis to stop the South African taxman in his tracks.”