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'We can seize Whyte's shares' say Rangers administrators

RANGERS' administrators claim they can take control of Craig Whyte's majority shareholding in the club.

Accountancy firm Duff & Phelps also insists that the disgraced Rangers owner is no longer able to exert any control over the stricken club's fortunes.

Paul Clark, of Duff & Phelps, added that he believed Whyte's claimed status as secured creditor is now worthless – meaning that if the club is liquidated he would receive no money.

"Make no mistake, Duff & Phelps are in charge of Rangers and we're making the decisions – not him," Clark said.

Whyte had claimed to be a secured creditor after paying off the club's £18 million debt to Lloyds Bank 10 months ago when he took charge of the club. This should have made Whyte first in line for the proceeds of any sale of assets – including Ibrox and Murray Park training ground – in the event of liquidation.

Prior to administration, it had been believed that the payment to Lloyds had been made by Whyte's firm Wavetower, which was renamed Rangers FC Group after the takeover.

However, Whyte has since admitted funding payment to Lloyds with money borrowed from finance firm Ticketus against future season ticket sales.

Clark is now certain Whyte's secured creditor status is worthless. He said: "There is no money due to him. The money from Ticketus was paid into [an account of London lawyers] Collyer Bristow and those monies were from the sale of Rangers season tickets. Those monies were then paid to [Lloyds] so the company, Rangers, paid off the bank – not Craig Whyte.

"He has no rights to Ibrox or Murray Park," Clark added. "We've seen no evidence of any investment by Craig Whyte into Rangers. We can't see any monies he's paid in.

"I don't see him as the ongoing owner of RFC. We're in control of the process. In terms of his influence on the outcome, he has little or no relevance. In terms of Rangers' future medium to long-term, he is absolutely irrelevant."

In theory, Whyte could still influence a possible route out of administration for Rangers in terms of a Company Voluntary Arrangement, whereby creditors agree to take a part payment on their debt. Whyte would remain the major shareholder under such a scenario.

However, the administrators believe Rangers FC Group owes the club money, and that this debt could be used to take control of the group and also the shareholding, leaving Whyte marginalised and powerless to veto any sale of the club.

He would also be unable to make any proceeds from whichever path Rangers take out of administration, and would lose £1, the price he paid to Sir David Murray for his shareholding.

Clark added: "The SFA have announced that Whyte is not a fit and proper person in accordance with the SFA's rule, and therefore he couldn't come back. And we never thought he was coming back."

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