Rangers hit with SFA punishments
The Scottish Football Association has hit Rangers with a series of punishments, including a 12-month transfer embargo.
Rangers have been hit with a 12-month embargo on signing players and owner Craig Whyte has been banned for life following a Scottish Football Association hearing into the club's financial affairs.
Administration-hit Rangers have also been fined a total of £160,000 while Whyte, who had already been deemed unfit to hold an official position in the game by the SFA, was handed fines totalling £200,000.
The SFA said their judicial panel would issue reasons for their findings in "early course" while both parties have three days to appeal following receipt of those reasons.
Whyte was defiant when asked for his reaction to the punishment on him and Rangers.
He said: "Tell me how it is going to affect me? I couldn't care less. It makes no difference to my life whatsoever - and good luck collecting the money. It's a joke. It is very harsh on Rangers. I am surprised at how harsh the SFA have been on a club which is going through tough times at the moment. Stewart Regan (chief executive) and Campbell Ogilvie (president) should resign and get out of Scottish football.
"The SFA want to kick Rangers when they are down and I hope people remember that. They are playing to the media."
Duff and Phelps, joint administrators of Rangers Football Club, condemned the ruling as "draconian" in a statement on Monday night.
Paul Clark, joint administrator, said: "All of us working on behalf of the Club are utterly shocked and dismayed by the draconian sanctions imposed on Rangers in respect of these charges.
"It appears that on one hand the disciplinary panel accepted our central argument that responsibility for bringing the Club into disrepute lay with the actions of one individual - Craig Whyte - as is evident from the unprecedented punishment meted out to him.
"During this hearing the Club produced compelling evidence from a number of sources that following his takeover, Craig Whyte ran the Club in a thoroughly unaccountable manner, rather than adhering to a long-established and proper form of corporate governance.
"The thrust of the charges against the Club focused on non-payment of payroll taxes and evidence was produced that all such decisions in this area were taken by Craig Whyte during his tenure.
"Given this evidence, it is difficult to comprehend that the disciplinary panel has seen fit
to effectively punish the Club even more heavily than Mr Whyte. As everyone knows, it has already been decided he is not a fit and proper person to run a football club and any further punishment on him will have little or no impact.
"However, for Rangers, a ban on signing players will seriously undermine the Club's efforts to rebuild after being rendered insolvent.
"Furthermore, we do not know how bidders for the Club will react to these sanctions and what affect they will have on their proposals.
"The Club has asked for full written reasons for these decisions and intend to appeal against the findings."
Rangers received their registration embargo and a £100,000 fine for breaching rule 66 - bringing the game into disrepute.
They received a £50,000 fine for going into administration and were fined £10,000 for failing to "procure" that Whyte acted within rules concerning fit and proper officials. The Gers chairman failed to notify the SFA that he had been disqualified as a director for seven years in 2000.
Rangers' fines are payable within 12 months. Whyte was fined £50,000 for bringing the game into disrepute but a charge of not acting in an improper manner and against the interests of football was not proven and was handed three more identical fines on separate counts of failing to follow directions from an SFA tribunal.
Whyte, who has been told to pay his fines within 30 days, was also expelled for life from "any participation in Association Football in Scotland".
Rangers faced six charges in all and were found guilty of five. Charges that they had failed to abide by rules concerning fit and proper officials were not proven.
The club were also found guilty of acting in an improper manner/against the best interests of football and also of failing to pay Dundee United gate receipts from their William Hill Scottish Cup meeting. They were "censured" on both counts.