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Saturday, July 28, 2007

Leeds United: Enough!

Ok boys, toothpicks under the eyelids, stay awake, because below is an example of just how corruption and the ‘old boys network’ works and you get shafted. Leeds United should have kept the sharks like Ken Bates away from their club because he has mucked it up so badly that you are likely a decade or more away from the Premiership again.

Your clubs players have not been paid, but tax evasion, offshore companies, strange ownership deals, odd consulting fees, and generally pushing the rules to the limit have created such an un-understandable murky mess that you’d need an army of lawyers and accountants to decipher it.

To make this as basic as I personally understand it, Leeds declared bankruptcy and KPMG sold the company immediately back to the same owners and have somehow had their debts forgiven to some offshore company. So a creditor has lent all this money to Leeds, then suddenly written off the entire loan. Huh?

Can I get one of these too? I got a house that would be nice to play such a trick with.

Beyond all of this, bids were made to buy the club that were much better than Ken Bates's but some behind the scenes forces have somehow made sure it’s his bid that was accepted. Stranger still.

Can I have an account on eBay like this?

So Ken Bates won control of Leeds United again despite accountants KPMG being presented with bigger cash offers. Bates, and who knows who, put up an offer but so did Redbus Group and Simon Morris –who offered twice as much.

The gambit was that Astor Investment Holdings, the strange offshore company holding the debt, said it would forgive the 17m pounds it was owed. Had any other bidder won, Astor would have demanded the money. Very unusual to say the least.

Ah, but the soft corruption has a source: KPMG stated was appointed Leeds administrators by a representative of Astor Investment Holdings, one Mark Taylor, who just happens to be a director of “Leeds United 2007 Ltd”, the name of the new company Bates formed to buy what he already owned.

The League has so far refused to sign over its "golden share" of membership to this new company, which was not bought via a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) of creditors.

The League has never approved a sale and transfer of a “golden share” without a CVA being agreed. Ken Bates wants an exception.

The question I would beg to know the answer to is how Leeds became indebted to offshore companies. Accounting tricks? Smells like it. And how, now, can these debts that seemed to contribute to the club’s bankruptcy be forgotten. Why not before –before players were not being paid?

So since Leeds is sold, and they don’t yet have permission to play in the upcoming season, a problem exists. But maybe not.

Here is where the old boys network kicks in: Leeds, historic club and all, just can’t miss a season and disappoint their fans, can they? That would crush the fans, wouldn’t it? So, the old boys will decide that it just can’t happen, you know, disappoint the fans, so they will ok this ‘exception’ and legitimize whatever sneaky dealings have gone on here.

So, use the masses to enrich the classes. This is a classic political gambit and it will work again. Were Leeds to miss a season and force a sale to a reputable person, my guess is that they would be back up among the elite faster than you can say CORRUPTION.

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13 Comments:

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

We just cannot have Bates seeing after our club. We are in league 1 for chrissake!

7/28/2007 5:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well sumarized mate!

7/28/2007 5:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes you are spot on.

7/28/2007 6:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Couldn't have put it better myself. For the record do not associate Leeds fans with the corrupt dirty dealing of the old chancer who has hijacked our club. I have had a season ticket for donkeys years and will be back next season but will make my anti Bates feelings known along with all else. More popular than Saddam my ar*e

7/28/2007 7:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bates and his chelsea boys are going to face a real backlash from the fans next season. If we have one.Lets hope he packs up and sods off very quickly.

7/29/2007 12:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let nobody play down the role KPMG has had in this. They have also obviously been on the take. They have a statuary right to ensure that all the dealings of the CVA are above board. They should be forced into full disclosure - surely they are essentially performing a legal procedure albeit sub con.

7/30/2007 12:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

BATES OUT!

7/30/2007 9:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's all well and good saying that we would have been better missing a season and a reputable company take over Leeds, but where were these reputable companies who had the chance to take over before Bates got his nasty mits on our beloved club?

8/04/2007 6:11 PM  
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