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Newcastle owner sues over PS3million golf deal.

Byline: Michael Marsh Reporter michael.marsh@ncjmedia.co.uk

Newcastle United owner and Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley is suing a business associate over a golf course deal.

Mr Ashley has alleged breach of contract and has asked for repayment of PS3m investment or compensation.

Detail of the claim emerged in paperwork lodged by lawyers at the High Court in London.

Lawyers representing Mr Ashley, 52, have outlined detail in a written claim form.

They say Mr Ashley and Tony Jimenez - former vice president (player recruitment) at Newcastle United - made a deal in 2008.

Papers say the agreement was that Mr Ashley would pay PS3m for a 5% holding in a golf course development in France.

Mr Jimenez was unavailable for comment but is thought to be disputing allegations made against him. Brixton-born Mr Jimenez left his role St James' Park in 2008 "to pursue other interests", a club statement released at the time said.

Four years ago, Mr Jimenez, a former co-owner of Charlton Athletic Football Club, was involved in a similar dispute with ex-Wimbledon and England footballer Dennis Wise.

A judge ruled in Mr Wise's favour in 2013 after a High Court hearing in London.

Mr Wise had said he gave "former close friend" Mr Jimenez PS500,000 to invest in the same French golf course development.

He claimed that the "agreed purpose" was not fulfilled and said he was entitled to have the money back.

Mr Jimenez disputed Mr Wise's claim and said the money was invested in the golf course development in Les Bordes as agreed.

Judge Penelope Reed ruled in Mr Wise's favour and ordered Mr Jimenez to pay compensation. The two men used to work together at Newcastle. Mr Wise was director of football while Mr Jimenez was a vice president.

In July, Mr Ashley claimed a "comprehensive victory" after a High Court battle with an investment banker over a PS15m deal allegedly made in a London pub.

Jeffrey Blue told a judge that Mr Ashley promised to pay him PS15m if he used his expertise to double Sports Direct's share price to PS8 a share. He said Mr Ashley paid only PS1 million and he wanted PS14m damages.

Mr Ashley denied the claim and said Mr Blue was talking "nonsense".

Mr Justice Leggatt heard that the dispute centred on a conversation in the Horse and Groom pub in Great Portland Street, four years ago.

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Newcastle United owner and Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley is suing a business associate over a golf course deal

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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Aug 31, 2017
Words:422
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