Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Seventh Report

Mr Robinson's solicitor's letter of 25 April 2001

174.  In his initial response to my memorandum in draft, Mr O'Sullivan argued that I had overlooked a central plank of Mr Robinson's case, namely -

    "The inherent implausibility of Mr Robert Maxwell making a payment to Mr Robinson, just days before making a payment of £150,000 to him from Central & Sheerwood Plc, the interlinking of these two issues and the contrast between their treatment i.e. one very correctly carried out in every aspect and the other, as you allege, an illicit arrangement."

175.  I do not find this argument persuasive. I do not regard it as "implausible" that Mr Robinson decided to treat one of the payments differently from the other. In any case, as Mr O'Sullivan accepts, the payment from Central & Sheerwood was agreed after that from Pergamon and only paid some time later. And the Pergamon payment met a particular need that Mr Robinson had at the time—that is to say, the reduction of that part of the Roll Centre debt which could otherwise have been regarded as a director's loan after the takeover of Transfer Technology Ltd. by Central & Sheerwood.

26 April 2001

Elizabeth Filkin

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