Leeds United ex- director in blackmail charge

By Jessica Elgot, December 9, 2009

Former property magnate and director of Leeds United Simon Morris has been charged with conspiracy to blackmail.

Mr Morris, 32, was declared bankrupt a year after his business empire SRM Holdings Group collapsed with debts of around £50 million.

The charges come after a long investigation by West Yorkshire police into the demise of the business.

He will appear before magistrates in Leeds next week, jointly charged with an unnamed 49-year-old man from Hyde, Cheshire.

His co-accused is also charged with possession of a firearm and possession of an offensive weapon.

Both have been released on police bail but will attend court on Tuesday.

Mr Morris was a director at Leeds United from 2004 until 2005. The football club was then taken over by current chairman Ken Bates.

Mr Bates recently lost a Court of Appeal bid to overturn a ruling that he libelled another former Leeds director Melvyn Levi in the matchday programme.

In July, Mr Levi was awarded £50,000 for libellous comments in three separate programmes, one labelling him a “shyster”.

Last updated: 3:39pm, December 10 2009