Falkirk have lost their appeal against the £40,000 fine they received for breaking SPFL rules over their illegal approach for Ray McKinnon.
A Scottish FA Appellate Tribunal has upheld the league body’s decision to find the Bairns guilty of breaching rules D9 and D10 and to mete out the financial sanction.
However, a further £20,000 penalty that was suspended for two years has been quashed.
Ton lodged a complaint with the SFPL after McKinnon quit his Cappielow post after just three months in charge to join the Bairns last August.
McKinnon also took assistant Darren Taylor and head of performance Graeme Henderson with him.
A SPFL tribunal consisting of Motherwell chief executive Alan Burrow, Arbroath director Anne McKeown and Rory Bannerman – solicitor and chair – heard evidence from all the parties in November before delivering their verdict in February – stating that the fine should be paid to the SPFL Trust.
Following their failure to overturn that decision through the Scottish FA, the Bairns have 28 days to hand over the money.
A Scottish FA spokesperson said: “The decision of SPFL to find that Falkirk FC breached rules D9 and 10 is upheld.
“The decision of SPFL to fine Falkirk FC £40,000 is upheld;
“The decision of SPFL to impose a suspended fine of £20,000 is quashed.”
Prior to the appeal being heard, Morton and Falkirk had reached their own confidential agreement regarding McKinnon’s controversial switch.
Bairns director Lex Miller brokered the truce and admits he is looking forward to welcoming Morton on Saturday after Ton officials boycotted the boardroom in December.
Stakes will be high on pitch at the weekend with ninth-place Falkirk just two points adrift of their Championship rivals but Miller admits there is no longer any animosity behind the scenes.
Speaking to the Falkirk Herald, Miller said: “I look forward to welcoming our friends from Morton back into the boardroom when the teams meet again.
“Morton felt wronged, we felt we hadn’t done anything wrong but we discussed it all and came to an amicable resolution and can now move on and get back to working together as football clubs.
“Falkirk and Morton have never been like that with one another. I couldn’t believe it.
“Morton look to us as a model community club, just as they are. We couldn’t have the ill-feeling detracting from our standing like this, so I was keen to try to sort something out.
“We spoke over the phone for a few weeks and finally sat down and reached an agreement because the situation was doing neither side any favours.”