Tyne & Wear

Newcastle United mount legal challenge after HMRC raids

St James' Park Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Newcastle United's ground was raided along with that of West Ham United

Tax officials have been banned from examining material seized from Newcastle United's ground, following a legal challenge mounted by the club.

St James' Park and West Ham United's ground were raided in April by HM Revenue and Customs as part of a £5m National Insurance fraud investigation.

Newcastle's managing director Lee Charnley was among several men arrested and later released without charge.

The ban remains in force until a court hearing on 22 June.

High Court judge Mr Justice Supperstone imposed the ban after lawyers for Newcastle United applied for a judicial review against HMRC.

Secured promotion

He directed that any material retained by HMRC must be returned to the club.

He also directed that the legal action involving the Magpies, who have just secured promotion to the Premier League, must return to court on 22 June.

It is expected the club will then have to show that it has an arguable case to take to a full judicial review hearing.

No details of the grounds of the challenge were revealed during Thursday's short court hearing.

Lawyers for both the club and HMRC said they could not provide any further information.

During the raids HMRC said it had seized business records and financial records as well as computers and mobile phones.

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