Landmark case could rewrite history of rugby club
Former Bulls owner claims victory against administrator
After being branded a ‘thief’ by some, Omar Khan says it was a ‘huge relief’ when a High Court ruled in his favour last week as he continues the fight to clear his name following his ownership of Bradford Bulls.
The Rugby League outfit were within 30 minutes of ceasing to exist when Mr Khan purchased the club via OK Bulls Ltd in August 2012.
Unfortunately in 2014, the company entered administration owing £1million. Mr Khan said that the company was solvent when he handed it over and it was difficult to see how the administrator had come to this decision as he had not counted Mr Khan’s investment fully.
The local restaurateur has always claimed that most of the money owed was in fact his investment and that the club should not have been affected.
The original report by Leeds-based administrator David Wilson stated Mr Khan had invested just £375,000 whilst in actual fact the figure, as the High Court confirmed, was much closer to the million mark.
During the administration process, any creditor is able to call for a creditor’s meeting - with the amount invested by each creditor equating to that person’s voting power. Mr Khan arranged this meeting at his own expense.
As the majority shareholder his votes would have determined the outcome of the meeting.
However, the Rugby Football League were also given a vote after claiming, the day before, that they were owed £900,000, something the High Court ruled was wrong, adding that the RFL should not have had any say at all.
Mr Khan says that a well known creditor, who will be named shortly, voted on the side of the administrator, so that the administration ended and an investigation, which is what Mr Khan wanted to propose by appointing an independent liquidator, could not take place
Mr Khan is now attempting to rearrange a creditors meeting where he is optimistic of his proposals being passed, without the influence of the RFL’s vote, and the possibility of a full investigation being launched into the administration by having a liquidator appointed.
Speaking about his victory at court, he said: “It was a relief to hear the correct verdict. This club should never have gone down. It wasn’t in debt, and the million pounds was mine not the clubs.
“I have been called a thief and accused of so much over the past year but this ruling is just the start of the truth coming out. I have even been made to look like a liar by the administration when all the evidence was there to prove otherwise.
“We are currently seeking to reschedule that key creditors meeting and are in talks with the administration’s solicitors.
“I am hopeful of putting my proposals forward and having the chance to see a full investigation into the administration launched.”
If a meeting can be arranged, the administration will write to all the creditors, including Mr Khan, to ask them to return and put forward their proposals.
Mr Khan will have much more power in the meeting without the RFL, and he says his main objective is to have an independent liquidator appointed to investigate ‘everything’ that happened.
“I want to completely clear my name and show that the old regime did nothing wrong,” Mr Khan added.