Top football agent, William McKay, today accepted a public apology and undisclosed libel damages at London’s High Court over a Daily Express report claiming he had been subjected to ‘interrogation’in an inquiry over allegedly irregular payments from transfer dealings.
He also complained that the article in January last year wrongly stated that he had previously been investigated by the French judiciary as part of a probe into transfer fraud and that it portrayed him as having been involved in transfer fraud in France.
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His counsel, Jonathan Crystal told Mr Justice David Eady that the article was headed ‘McKay first up of eight in the spotlight.’
He said that in March 2006 the Premier League launched an inquiry into alleged irregular payments from transfer dealings. McKay had been involved in four transfers which were to be analysed and, as part of the inquiry Crystal said McKay had voluntarily met those conducting it to provide information.
He said that by June 2007 a statement was released confirming that it was clear there was no evidence of irregular payments in respect of the transfers involving McKay. He had been thanked for his co-operation.
Crystal said that the allegations in the article had damaged McKay’s personal and professional reputation and had caused him distress. They had also caused embarrassment for him and those with whom he worked both in the football and racing industry.
The Daily Express, he said, now accepted the allegations were untrue and in addition to apologising and paying damages were also to pay McKay’s legal costs.
Catrin Evans, counsel for the Express told the court they apologised for the embarrassment and distress caused by the article.