Nicola Sturgeon’s Government is under mounting pressure to release the legal advice received during its court battle with Alex Salmond.

The Scottish Tories want to force a Holyrood vote on the Government’s refusal to hand over papers relating to its doomed bid to defend Salmond’s judicial review.

Tory donors are also preparing to fund a legal bid in an attempt to have the advice published.

A Holyrood committee is examining how the SNP Government investigated complaints of sexual misconduct against Salmond when he was First Minister.

Salmond pursued a judicial review and he was successful when it was agreed the internal probe had been unlawful and tainted by apparent bias.

The flawed investigation, which destroyed the long-standing friendship between Salmond and Sturgeon, cost the public purse over £600,000.

However, the Holyrood inquiry has been marred by a row over the Government's refusal to give the committee the legal advice obtained during the judicial review.

One source close to the Committee suspects the Government knew it was fighting a lost cause long before they conceded the case to Salmond.

Scottish Tory MSP Oliver Mundell has today submitted a motion that reads: “That the Parliament calls on the Scottish Government to publish the legal advice it received regarding the judicial review on the investigation of Alex Salmond’s alleged behaviour.”

If a majority of MSPs back the motion, a debate and vote in Parliament could take place.

Mundell said: “The Scottish Government has treated this inquiry as a joke and kept key documents hidden, and the Scottish Parliament has been misled repeatedly and blatantly.

“We are calling on MSPs to stand up for the reputation of the parliament. The legal advice must be published, so we can find out exactly how £500,000 of public money was wasted.”

The Times newspaper also reported this morning that a group of Tory donors are willing to back legal action on the issue.

The Government has been unwilling to produce the legal advice, even though it has done so in relation to the inquiries into child abuse, UK infected blood and the Edinburgh trams project.

In a letter to the Holyrood committee last week, Salmond’s lawyer said: “Mr Salmond calls on the Scottish Government to publish the legal advice given to the Scottish Government on the prospects of successfully defending the judicial review.”