THE SNP have responded to Scottish Tory accusations of “murky” finances after Peter Murrell – the party’s chief executive – loaned it more than £100,000.

The £107,620 loan from Murrell, who is married to party leader Nicola Sturgeon, was made on June 20, 2021, according to the Electoral Commission.

Two repayments – of £26,905 and £20,715 respectively – were made by the SNP in August and October of that year. That means there is exactly £60,000 left outstanding.

As the loan was made in the second quarter of 2021, it should have been declared to the electoral watchdog in July of that year.

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Rules state the body should have been notified 30 days after the end of the quarter in which the loan was made. However, it was instead told in August 2022.

The Scottish Tories claimed the loan was “beyond odd” and that Murrell’s role in the SNP was growing “murkier”.

However, an SNP spokesperson said the loan was a regulated transaction made to help with "cashflow" in the wake of the last Holyrood elections.

They said: “The loan was reported in our 2021 accounts, which were published by the Electoral Commission in mid-August. The nature of this transaction was initially not thought to give rise to a reporting obligation.

“However, as it had been recorded in the party's 2021 accounts as a loan, it was accordingly then reported to the Electoral Commission as a regulated transaction. This was a personal contribution made by the chief executive to assist with cashflow after the Holyrood election.”

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Craig Hoy, the Scottish Tory MSP and party chairman, had said it was “high time the SNP came clean to their own members about what is actually going on and explained why their chief executive is making such large loans to the party his wife leads”.

Hoy also raised the issue of "the ‘missing’ £600k of donations". However, this was seemingly accounted for in the SNP's 2021 accounts, which showed that a total of £740,822 had been raised “through the independence related appeals”, with a total of £253,335 of that having already been spent.

The Tory MSP's comments come despite the Scottish Tories having taken almost £100,000 in 2021 from a “dark money” group which does not have to file accounts or show where its money originated.

Murrell’s loan was first reported by the Wings Over Scotland website.

The blog, run by Stuart Campbell from Bath in England, had announced it was closing down in May 2021 in the wake of the Holyrood election. “Wings is over,” Campbell wrote.

However, the blogger has since started posting again, with three articles in two days this week.