Dove Trust founder appeals to charity tribunal against interim manager appointment

Keith Colman, a former trustee of the charity that runs the suspended online giving platform CharityGiving, lodges two appeals against Charity Commission decisions

Charity tribunal
Charity tribunal

The founder of the Dove Trust, the charity that runs the suspended online giving platform CharityGiving, has lodged appeals with the charity tribunal against the appointment of an interim manager and restrictions on its bank accounts imposed by the Charity Commission.

Keith Colman, the founder and a former trustee of the trust, lodged two separate appeals at the First-tier Tribunal (Charity) last month against the decisions made by the commission in December to uphold two previous decisions it made last summer.

The charity tribunal is awaiting the commission’s response to the appeal.

The regulator restricted the charity’s bank accounts in June 2013 in order to protect charitable funds.

In July it appointed Pesh Framjee, head of not-for-profit at the accountancy firm Crowe Clark Whitehill LLP, as interim manager of the charity to the exclusion of its trustees.

The trustees of the Dove Trust asked the commission to review its banking restrictions in September, and the following month asked it to review the appointment of Framjee. The regulator said in a statement in December that the reviewers "considered that both decisions were lawful, proportionate and reasonable and should remain in place".

The commission said later in December that it had concluded there was misconduct and mismanagement at the trust, which is subject to a Charity Commission statutory inquiry. It also said the total liabilities of the trust, most of it owed to charities, totalled about £2.2m. 

The regulator said at the time that it had begun the process of removing Colman as a trustee, but he had resigned before the commission was able to remove him.

The commission said today that an initial directions hearing into the distribution of the first sums of money from CharityGiving would take place on 20 March in the High Court. The commission had asked the High Court in December to rule on how to distribute the money, saying it hoped a directions hearing could be scheduled for January and a full hearing "early in 2014".

Third Sector was unable to contact Colman.

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