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Ashley fights SFA decision to let King take over Rangers

By Ronnie Esplin

Rangers chairman Dave King is on a collision course with Ibrox shareholder Mike Ashley over his status as a 'fit and proper person' to be in charge of the Scottish giants.

Ashley, who also owns Newcastle United, has launched a legal challenge against the Scottish FA's decision to allow King to take over the club back in May.

A courtroom battle now looks likely after a judge set a date for a hearing next year.

King's election as chairman had to be ratified by the SFA following a series of tax convictions in South Africa.

He admitted to 41 breaches of the South African Income Tax Act and paid £43.7m in a settlement after a decade-long legal battle in 2013.

Ashley's lawyers have argued that the SFA's 'fit and proper person' test should not have allowed King to take over as chairman of Rangers because of his history and have asked for a judicial review.

Judge Lady Wolffe has set a date in April at Edinburgh's Court of Session to hear the case.

Ashley is also contesting an SFA fine of £7,500 that he was given when they deemed he broke the rules regarding dual interest in football clubs. It was later reduced to £1,000. That hearing will take place in February.

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