Redknapp charged


LONDON, February 11- Harry Redknapp and Milan Mandaric appeared in court Thursday on charges of tax evasion related to their time as, respectively, manager and chairman of troubled Premier League club Portsmouth.Redknapp, 62, now Tottenham boss, and Mandaric, 71, the current Leicester chairman, were both present at City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court for their first hearing in the case.

After 10 minutes in court, District Judge Timothy Workman adjourned the case until April 14 and released both men on unconditional bail.

The pair were charged separately last month with two counts of tax evasion relating to a payment of 295,000 dollars that Mandaric made to Redknapp via a bank account in Monaco, allegedly avoiding payroll taxes due on the sum in the process. Both men deny any wrongdoing.

Portsmouth are also embroiled in a dispute with the British tax authorities, who are seeking to have the club wound up because of an outstanding Value Added Tax bill of more than seven million pounds, which the club disputes.

At a hearing in the High Court on Wednesday, a judge gave Portsmouth seven days to show how it intended to repay the money and other creditors.

Failing that, the judge could grant the winding up order requested by the tax authorities, which would force Portsmouth to seek the protection of administration or go out of business altogether.

The club’s current financial woes are a legacy of chronic overspending on transfers and wages during the time that Redknapp was the manager.