West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady wins latest battle in 'surveillance' case


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The Independent Football

West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady today succeeded in the latest stage of an attempt to discover how details of her telephone records found their way into the hands of a firm of accountants while rival clubs were bidding to use the Olympic Stadium after the 2012 London games.

Accountancy firm PKF agreed to hand information in its possession to lawyers representing Brady.

A High Court judge approved an order, under which PKF agreed to provide documents to Ms Brady and West Ham, after Brady began legal action.

Brady, who was managing director of Birmingham from 1993 to 2009, was not at today's hearing.

Lawyers said, after a High Court hearing before Mr Justice Coulson in London, that Brady would decide whether to take any further legal action once documentation had been studied.

At a hearing last week, Mr Justice Coulson said PKF had been "engaged" by West Ham's London rivals Tottenham to carry out an investigation that was "connected" to the Olympic Stadium.

He said Brady's telephone records had been "unlawfully obtained by subterfuge" at the height of a dispute over the future use of the stadium - and added that PKF had said it had copies of the records.

The judge was told that Tottenham had been given copies of the records by PKF. But lawyers for Tottenham said no-one at the club had the records prior to the start of legal proceedings.

West Ham and Brady began legal action against PKF and one of the firm's partners, Howard Hill, earlier this year.

In a statement the club had said: "PKF are a firm of accountants instructed by Tottenham to investigate West Ham during the bidding process for the Olympic Stadium."

The statement added: "The claim is for an order to obtain full information and documents relating to the unlawful obtaining of Karren Brady's mobile telephone records and to obtain information identifying the wrongdoers responsible for unlawfully obtaining such records."

Tottenham and West Ham had both wanted to move to the £486million Olympic Stadium in Stratford, east London, after next year's Olympics.

They were embroiled in a legal dispute after the the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC) opted for a bid put forward by West Ham.

Tottenham said the decision was unfair and mounted a High Court challenge against the OPLC's decision.

But the legal action was halted in October after the OPLC said it had decided to discontinue the process to dispose of the stadium and instead allow it to remain in public ownership and be rented out.