Rupinder Bains, Board Member at the Football Association (FA), is being investigated by the English football governing body in connection with a failed takeover bid for Crystal Palace back in 2020.
The Daily Mail revealed that Bains was involved in a deal as a lawyer, backed by a former Malta Prime Minister, which failed in its £185m bid to takeover the Premier League club with no knowledge of her involvement by the FA.
Bains acted as a private lawyer in the proposed deal back in 2020 but failed to inform the FA of her involvement as she did not consider she was ‘required to do so’.
Bains was hired to oversee due diligence of the deal as the two figureheads behind the deal, Benjamin Leigh Hunt and Dr. Wasay Bhatti, paid Bains to oversee the legalities of the deal as the two lead buyers were behind the now-collapsed crypto exchange ‘London Football Exchange’ (LFE).
The Daily Mail revealed that Dr. Bhatti paid Bains directly and the duo also were given access to Crystal Palace’s account information, such as data on the club’s personnel and its Chairman Steve Parish.
This led to Bains as the Managing Director of law firm Pinder Reaux to enter the deal to carry out due diligence but did not inform the FA of her presence in the deal.
The proposed deal broke down in early 2020 after the Palace board deemed the buyers unsuitable to own the club.
“The FA had no involvement in the proposed takeover of Palace in 2019-2020 and we were unaware of the involvement of Rupinder Bains,” read an FA statement.
“We have now established that she was acting in her private capacity as a solicitor. This work was not declared to the FA board. We are deeply concerned and will conduct an investigation.”
Bains has been a non-executive Board Member of the FA since 2017, as well as a non-executive Director for the Premier League and English Football League (EFL).