FORMER Rangers owner Craig Whyte has sensationally claimed that he used to “correct” the stories of Jim Traynor – then a journalist at the Daily Record – before they went to print.

Into The Bear Pit, Whyte’s autobiography due to be released next Friday, sees Whyte – who bought Rangers from David Murray in 2011 – also claim that he was able to get stories “pulled” from the Scottish press whenever he wanted.

He also tells of his shock when the Record and Traynor – now the PR chief at Rangers – wrongly called him a “billionaire” in an infamous front-page headline.

Whyte claims: “Jim Traynor used to send me his articles through before he’d print them, and I’d correct them for him.

“In the pre-internet days, Murray must have had complete control.

“Some journalists were happy to have a good relationship with Rangers if that meant getting stories, even if as a result it became difficult to criticise the club. Traynor had got in touch ... about a month after I went into Ibrox. We went for lunch at the Rogano restaurant and from that day he hounded me for a job.

“I was never that impressed with him. I would soon discover he could fly with the wind.”

Traynor hit back last night at Whyte’s claims, telling the Glasgow Times: “The truth about him is well-known. He was merely a pawn in a strategy – played perfectly by the Record team at the time.

“So I can understand that he was ultimately and rightly exposed. You’d have thought the pound would have dropped by now.”

In the book, Whyte also said he could phone up newspapers to get rid of bad stories. “I had dinners with all the editors and learned very quickly that if there was a negative story I could call some of them up and have a pretty good chance of getting it stopped.

“With the Daily Record I had a 100% chance, and it was the same with The Sun.

“I used to call the editor of The Herald. I had a 50-50 chance of getting things stopped there. If it didn’t get stopped, you threatened them with withdrawal of access, that they wouldn’t get stories.”

He then describes picking up the Daily Record on the day the newspaper printed the news he was going to buy Rangers: “The front page screamed: ‘BILLIONAIRE SCOT TO BUY RANGERS FOR £30m.’ What the hell?! Billionaire?! How had they come to that?

“I soon found out. In response to the enquiries from journalists, Ian McKerron had put together a small biography of me, and had said I had a billion under management.

“Clearly the Record hadn’t understood there is a world of difference between assets under management and assets that you own. Maybe it was a reasonable mistake to make, but it wasn’t true.”

The piece, written by Traynor, claimed talks were at an advanced stage, though Whyte claims this was not the case after only meeting Murray once until that point.

Claims by Traynor that then Rangers manager Walter Smith would have a “massive sum” to spend in the following January were also wide of the mark, according to Whyte.

“The Scottish Sun went further and said: ‘RANGERS SOLD BY XMAS,” added Whyte.

The Daily Record and The Scottish Sun declined to comment.