LONDON, England, January 26 – Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp was the only person responsible for the bank account in Monaco at the centre of charges of tax evasion against him, a court heard on Thursday.
On the fourth day of his trial, a bank executive said Redknapp was the only signature on records for the account, which he allegedly used to hide $295,000 (225,000 euros) from tax authorities.
At Southwark Crown Court in London, David Cusdin, vice-president of HSBC in Monaco between 2000 and 2005, said he recalled Redknapp flying into the principality to open an account.
Giving evidence via videolink, Cusdin said: “I was certainly aware of his visit. It was quite possible that I didn’t open the account, it was one of my team, but I was certainly aware of the visit.
“I don’t have a recollection, but I could well have shaken his hand at the meeting.”
Cusdin added it was normally necessary for the client to be present: “In this case, it is a single person on the account… one signature on the account”.
The banker, who headed a team of 700 during his time in Monaco, said he was responsible “for private English-speaking clientele”.
Another of his clients was Redknapp’s co-defendant Milan Mandaric, 73, who was chairman of Portsmouth when Redknapp was manager of the club and is now chairman of Sheffield Wednesday in England’s third tier.
The banker said he had known Mandaric since 1998 and described him as a “perfect gentleman… he would always ring prior to his visit”.
The trial has heard that Redknapp opened a Monaco bank account — named ‘Rosie 47’ after his pet English bulldog — which he allegedly kept secret from his accountant for more than four years.
Redknapp, who has been tipped as a future England manager because of his success in leading Tottenham into the top four of the Premier League, and Mandaric both deny two counts of cheating the public revenue.