Manchester Arena Fraud Mystery

Police are reportedly investigating a fraud accusation at SMG Europe. 

On July 21, the Manchester Evening News reported that there had so far been no arrests and “enquiries are ongoing.” SMG and Pollstar requests for comment.

Greater Manchester Police has told the arena, which was the Phones 4U Arena, that last October it received allegations of fraud at SMG Europe. An auto response on SMG Europe regional vice president John Knight’s email says he’s “currently unavailable,” while venue general manager James Allen hasn’t replied to Pollstar emails. 

SMG Europe, which is based in Manchester, operates more than 230 venues.

News of the alleged fraud come a week after the Evening News, which itself was title sponsor for the venue for a dozen years up to 2011, reported that the venue’s contributed £3 billion to the local economy over the last 20 years.

The 21,000-capacity arena was the third-busiest in Pollstar’s 2014 Year-End international arenas chart, behind The  and  in Scotland.

This summer the venue’s undergoing a multimillion-pound refurbishment, which will include ripping out and replacing seating and adding striking digital signage along the bridge between Victoria Station and the City Room entrance.