Leyton Orient's £250k tax debt paid in full as club avoid administration — for now

Luke Brown
The Independent
Leyton Orient's tax bill was paid in full: Getty
Leyton Orient's tax bill was paid in full: Getty

A bid to wind up struggling football club Leyton Orient over an unpaid tax bill has been adjourned, after the debt was paid in full.

The struggling League Two club reportedly had a £250k tax bill but on Monday morning the High Court heard that the bill had been settled.

Orient now have until June 12 to find the money to pay four other creditors, with one backing a winding-up order against the club. Bosses at an event management firm say they are owed about £18,000.

Waltham Forest Council are understood to be owed £36,000 while the club photographer is owed £6,000.

The judge, Registrar Nicholas Briggs, had analysed the case at a Bankruptcy and Companies Court hearing in London.

A lawyer representing Orient said that the club's chairman, Francesco Becchetti, would inject a further £1 million into the club soon. But fans said after the hearing that Orient were still in "mortal danger".

Struggling Orient are bottom of League Two (Getty)
Struggling Orient are bottom of League Two (Getty)

Kelly Kaye, 39, a fan for 32 years, said: "It would be good if the club could be sold.

"I would like it to go to somebody who can actually take care of it and look after it properly.

"We've got a great history."

The settlement of the tax bill means that Leyton Orient will survive in the short-term and will be able to complete the rest of their matches this season.

The club are currently involved in a relegation dog-fight, sitting bottom of English football's fourth-tier, seven points from safety.

Additional reporting by PA.

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