It is important to note that Michelle Thomson MP appears not to be the focus of the police investigation stemming from irregularities the Scottish Solicitors’ Disciplinary Tribunal may have uncovered (report, 30-09-15). Indeed, Thomson is clear that she has “always acted within the law”.
However, whilst Ms Thomson’s actions may well have been legal, this does not mean they are morally acceptable. Her company, M&F Property Solutions, targeted people who were desperate and exploited that vulnerability. In one reported case, a 77 year old pensioner undergoing cancer treatment reluctantly sold her property to Thomson’s business partner for £65,000 – it was sold on the same day for £95,000. In another reported example a pensioner felt “preyed upon” when he found he’d sold his property for £25,000 less than it was worth. Thomson bragged online about buying properties at “hugely discounted rates”.
Vulnerable people need to be supported, not exploited. That’s the way society works. The kind of predatory capitalism Michelle Thomson has been involved in may well be legal, but it has no place in Scotland.
These are clearly serious allegations about an SNP MP who leads business policy decision making in the party. Are we really to believe that the people of Edinburgh West would have voted from Michelle Thomson if they had known about how her business had been operated? Can she now credibly support constituents with mortgage problems given her history?
We need full disclosure from the people at the very top of the SNP about who knew what and when. If the SNP are serious about delivering social justice in Scotland they must also now permanently remove her from the party. This will send a clear message that predatory capitalism has no place in Scotland.