In May 2010 I interviewed Martin Bain for an article I was writing for the News of the World on the tax case at Rangers.
This article, which commanded a front page “splash”, was the first time that the facts and figures of the tax bill that Rangers were potentially facing were put out into the public domain.
It was important then to put a series of questions to the then Rangers Chief Executive.
I asked him if he had been paid through an Employee Benefit Trust.
He paused and then said “that’s a matter for me and the taxman.”
I asked him “so that’s a ‘no comment’ then Martin?”
He didn’t demure.
I left it at that I had asked the question and noted his “no comment” response.
Now today we have Rangers owner Craig Whyte stating as an assertion that Mr Bain DID receive payments through an EBT.
“The bitter irony here is that former director John McClelland has an EBT and so does the ex-chief executive Martin Bain. The EBTs were stopped the day that I took over. Now we are in a world of uncertainty and if this tax case goes against us we will have a huge problem.”
Mr Bain did not deny that he was paid through an EBT.
Now Mr Whyte has stated that this was, indeed, the case.
My notes from May 2010 (Saturday 15th) tell me that I also asked Mr Bain whether or not Sir David Murray had financially benefited via an Employee Benefit Trust.
That too was met with a “no comment.”
I repeatedly asked him if senior personnel at Rangers other than players had benefited from this “tax efficient” scheme, but all he would say was the EBT involved “employees of the trust.”
The full story of who had an EBT at Rangers is yet to come out.