Former first minister Alex Salmond has confirmed he has launched legal action against the Scottish Government, saying the “day of reckoning” over the handling of harassment complaints against him “will inevitably come”.
Both the former SNP leader and his lawyer Gordon Dangerfield have released statements in relation to the case.
Here are the statements from Mr Salmond and Mr Dangerfield:
“Throughout this tawdry business I have done my talking in court or in front of Parliament. That has resulted in victory in the Court of Session and being cleared of all charges in the High Court of Justiciary. I intend to continue with that practice.
“Despite Lord Pentland’s findings in the Court of Session that the behaviour of the former Permanent Secretary and her officials was “unlawful”, “unfair” and “tainted by apparent bias”, despite the ongoing police and crown office enquiries into the criminal leaks and potential perjury at the criminal trial, despite the astonishing revelations of misfeasance contained in the eventual publication of the government’s own legal advice, and despite the specific findings of the Parliamentary Inquiry into the conduct of the former Permanent Secretary and the former First Minister, not one single person has been held accountable. With this court action that evasion of responsibility ends.
“We have agreed to the sisting of proceedings to allow the criminal investigations into leaking and perjury to be completed. However, the calling of the action signals that the day of reckoning for the Scottish Government’s record of misfeasance on this grand scale will inevitably come.”
Gordon Dangerfield statement
“We aver that public officials decided at an early stage that Mr Salmond was to be found guilty of allegations against him, regardless of the actual facts. As events snowballed, we aver that public officials then took part in the criminal leaking of confidential documents, the concealment of documents in defiance of court orders and a criminal warrant, the misleading of the court during judicial review proceedings, the soliciting of false criminal complaints, and ultimately the commission of perjury at a parliamentary inquiry. All of this, we aver, was done for political reasons, and specifically to injure Mr Salmond.
“Many documents which are relevant to these averments continue to be concealed by the Scottish Government despite repeated requests for disclosure of them over the course of the last year since this action was first raised. We aver that this refusal to disclose is a continuation of the misfeasance which began more than five years ago.
“A major aim of Mr Salmond in bringing this action is to obtain disclosure of this vital evidence and to blow apart the Scottish Government cover-up which has gone on now for far too long.”