Sheffield United emails were about banter not bin Laden club official claims

Mr Tutton said the money was a “bribe” paid by another businessman, and he told the judge “it absolutely stinks”.Mr Tutton added: “He (Prince Abdullah) has got a £3 million loan that has come in from nowhere. It’s unsecured. This loan is very soft and smelly.”The hearing is due to last several weeks. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. UTB LLC, a company controlled by Prince Abdullah, wants declarations in respect of its rights under an investment and shareholders’ agreement.Prince Abdullah has said the person behind a £3 million sum was Saleh Mohammed bin Laden.He said Mr McCabe and his associates knew that, and claims the name was mentioned at a meeting in Dubai in 2017.Mr McCabe disputes Prince Abdullah’s claims.He said he recalled the name being mentioned once at a meeting but that it was never mentioned again.Mr McCabe said the money given to Prince Abdullah was a “bribe” from someone else.Barrister Andreas Gledhill QC, who is leading UTB’s legal team, on Friday said Mr McCabe, or his associates, knew about the bin Laden link in early 2017.He suggested Mr Tutton knew the source of the money might be Saleh Mohammed bin Laden by February 2017.Mr Gledhill told the court of an email written by Mr Tutton saying: “I would hate to see a Sheffield Star headline saying Blades Launder Money For Extremists.”But Mr Tutton said the email was “banter” and described the suggestion that money might be from a member of the bin Laden family as “rubbish”.He told the judge: “No way I knew this was anything to do with the bin Laden family.” Emails between senior figures at Sheffield United Football Club apparently discussing a £3 million loan from the family of Osama bin Laden were yesterday dismissed as “banter” at the High Court.Jeremy Tutton told a High Court judge analysing a control battle between the newly-promoted Premier League club’s co-owners on Friday that the suggestion the football club might be getting money from a Saudi businessman related to the late al Qaida leader was “rubbish”.Mr Justice Fancourt has heard Mr Tutton, an accountant who works with co-owner Kevin McCabe, had written an email telling how he would hate to see a local newspaper headline saying Sheffield United was “laundering money for extremists”.Mr Tutton told the court he knew money was coming into the club from abroad, and was doing financial checks, but he described the email as “banter”.The club’s co-owners, Mr McCabe, 71, and Prince Abdullah Bin Mosaad Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, a member of the Saudi royal family, have fallen out after starting to work together six years ago.Mr Justice Fancourt is analysing their fight for control of the club, whose nickname is The Blades, at a trial in LondonSheffield United Ltd, a company controlled by Mr McCabe and his family, has alleged “conspiracy” and “unfairly prejudicial conduct” and wants damages.

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