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Salmond wins legal fight over handling of harassment claims

ALEX SALMOND has called for Scotland’s top civil servant to quit after he won a legal case over the government’s handling of sexual harassment allegations against him.

The former first minister said permanent secretary Leslie Evans was to blame for the ‘institutional failure’ in the handling of the complaint, adding the court case could have cost the public as much as £500,000.

Yesterday, Judge Lord Pentland ruled government actions had been ‘unlawful, procedurally unfair’ and ‘tainted with apparent bias’.

Edinburgh’s court of session heard the person investigating the complaints — which Mr Salmond (pictured) strongly denies — had involvement with the complainants before being hired.

Mr Salmond, who plans to rejoin the SNP after quitting while he fought the allegations, said he hoped Ms Evans would now ‘consider her position’.

Ms Evans apologised for ‘distress’ to the two female complainants but stressed it was a procedural flaw and the original claims should be re-investigated. First minister Nicola Sturgeon added it was ‘deeply regrettable’ the government was forced to settle.