If relegation from the Premiership wasn’t hard enough to swallow, not to mention the resignation of former manager Alex McLeish, Carson Yeung, president of Birmingham City, now faces five courts of money laundering involving £59 million ($95 million).
After appearing at the Eastern Law Court in Hong Kong on Thursday, it has been reported that Yeung has “[dealt] with property known or believed to represent proceeds of an indictable offence.”
According to prosecutors, the charges are alleged to have taken place between 2001 and 2007, before Yeung had any involvement with the club.
Meanwhile, Birmingham’s chairman, Pete Pannu, has reassured supporters that the club is financially stable.
Pannu said: 'I've had it explained to me that the charges relate to the 2001-2007 period - two years before Carson invested in this club so there is no connection there. The fans have nothing to worry about. The finances are okay. I'm flying out later today and will be able to tell you more when I come back. Understandably the fans are worried about this. This has got nothing to do with the club and there is no impact on the operations over here. I've spoken on a couple of occasions to Carson and his lawyers and they've assured me there is no link whatsoever.”
Yeung’s next hearing is on August 11. He has since been released on bail of £558,000 ($896,539).
Although Birmingham will be competing in the Championship (second division) next season, the Midlands club qualified for the UEFA Europe League after defeating Arsenal 2-1 to win the Carling Cup in February.
They will enter the competition at the play-off stage, having to beat their unconfirmed opponents over two legs to qualify for the group stage. Their opponents will be drawn on August 5, while the matches will be played on August 18 and August 25.