Former Northampton Town chairman denies claims he withheld concerns about developers to profit himself

David Cardoza, former chairman of Northampton Town
David Cardoza, former chairman of Northampton Town

The former Cobblers chairman has denied accusations of deliberately withholding concerns over the way a company was handling the Sixfields development so he could profit himself.

David Cardoza has resumed giving evidence on the seventh day of the High Court case between Northampton Borough Council and three members of the Cardoza family.

The borough says the former Northampton Town owners breached the terms of a £10.25million loan to Northampton Town in 2013 and 2014 by receiving “circular payments” for themselves - rather than spending the funds on the intended stadium development.

Today it was put to Mr Cardoza that he failed to warn the council over his fears the loan money was being misused by the development firm County Group.

James Morgan QC said the former chairman allowed for two sets of the loan money to be passed onto the developers in April and May 2014 totalling £3 million - even though the Cardozas were worried about the pace of the development.

Delays to the East Stand, they predicted at the time, would hit the club’s revenue by up to £500,000, the court heard.

Then in July, a further £1.25 million was passed onto a County Group firm to launch the hotel development.

David Cardoza later told his solicitors that in July he “did not trust them (County Group)" and was “very suspicious over what had happened with the fund”.

Within one working day of that money being sent to County Group, the football club received £600,000 back.

About £300,000 of that was then paid out to David Cardoza and his father, the hearing was told.

“Did you, at any point tell the council of your suspicion that this company had been misusing stadium loans,” asked James Morgan QC for the council.

“From the drawdown, no, correct,” replied Mr Cardoza.

Mr Morgan added: “You kept quiet didn’t you Mr Cardoza so that, if there was a drawdown of money you would get some back from it?”

“No,” responded the former chairman. “How are these things going to get built and done if money was just being taken out? It’s non-sensical”.

Mr Cardoza later responded that the £166,000 he received was part of his salary.

“I had to live myself,” he said. “It was my salary. I had bills and children and mortgages and all sorts and house works and everything else.”

The hearing continues