FORMER first minister Alex Salmond has released a statement addressing the legal action he is taking against the Scottish Government.

It comes after reports that the now Alba leader was seeking millions of pounds in damages over its investigation into sexual misconduct claims made against him in 2018.

An investigation into allegations about Salmond’s behaviour made by two women was found to have been unlawful and “tainted by apparent bias” following a judicial review.

The former first minister was also cleared on 14 counts of sexual assault at a separate criminal trial in 2020 He is now launching civil action in the courts, with former first minister Nicola Sturgeon named in the action.

Releasing a statement on Friday afternoon, Salmond said he was looking to ensure that the “evasion of responsibility" is to end.

READ MORE: Jackie Baillie and Alister Jack scoop top prizes at Scottish politician awards

Salmond said: “Throughout this tawdry business I have done my talking in court or in front of Parliament. That has resulted in victory in the Court of Session and being cleared of all charges in the High Court of Justiciary. I intend to continue with that practice.

“Despite Lord Pentland’s findings in the Court of Session that the behaviour of the former permanent secretary and her officials was ‘unlawful’, ‘unfair’ and ‘tainted by apparent bias’, despite the ongoing police and Crown Office enquiries into the criminal leaks and potential perjury at the criminal trial, despite the astonishing revelations of misfeasance contained in the eventual publication of the government’s own legal advice, and despite the specific findings of the parliamentary inquiry into the conduct of the former permanent secretary and the former first minister, not one single person has been held accountable.

“With this court action that evasion of responsibility ends.”

Salmond added: “We have agreed to the sisting of proceedings to allow the criminal investigations into leaking and perjury to be completed.

“However, the calling of the action signals that the day of reckoning for the Scottish Government’s record of misfeasance on this grand scale will inevitably come.”

Reports in the Herald said the legal action was seeking some £3 million in damages. A spokesperson for Salmond said: "It will be for the court to determine damages once the case on misfeasance has been won. They will be significant.”

The National: Alex Salmond

Gordon Dangerfield, who is serving as the former first minister’s lawyer, said: “This is an action of misfeasance in public office in which we aver that public officials of the Scottish Government conducted themselves improperly, in bad faith and beyond their powers, with the intention of injuring Mr Salmond.

“The public officials and ministers named in our action include, among others, the former permanent secretary Leslie Evans, the former chief of staff Liz Lloyd and the former first minister Nicola Sturgeon.

“We aver that public officials decided at an early stage that Mr Salmond was to be found guilty of allegations against him, regardless of the actual facts. As events snowballed, we aver that public officials then took part in the criminal leaking of confidential documents, the concealment of documents in defiance of court orders and a criminal warrant, the misleading of the court during judicial review proceedings, the soliciting of false criminal complaints, and ultimately the commission of perjury at a parliamentary inquiry. All of this, we aver, was done for political reasons, and specifically to injure Mr Salmond.

“Many documents which are relevant to these averments continue to be concealed by the Scottish Government despite repeated requests for disclosure of them over the course of the last year since this action was first raised. We aver that this refusal to disclose is a continuation of the misfeasance which began more than five years ago. A major aim of Mr Salmond in bringing this action is to obtain disclosure of this vital evidence and to blow apart the Scottish Government cover-up which has gone on now for far too long.”