Stuart Lee Hewlett, a director of S H Waste Management Ltd, a wholesaler in scrap metal based in Cambridgeshire has given an undertaking to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills to be disqualified as a director for a period of 12 years for engaging in transactions linked to VAT fraud.

The disqualification regime exists to protect the public and Mr Hewletts disqualification from 15 July 2015 means that he cannot promote, manage, or be a director of a limited company until 2027.

This disqualification follows investigation by the Official Receiver at Public Interest Unit, a specialist team of the Insolvency Service, whose involvement commenced with the winding up of the company, following a winding up petition presented by HMRC for 77,825 for unpaid VAT.

The Official Receivers investigation uncovered that S H Waste Management Ltd entered into a number of transactions, purchasing goods from outside the UK and selling them on within the UK, without accounting to HMRC for the output tax charged on those sales.

The sales made by S H Waste Management Ltd were below the cost price which was only possible through the planned VAT fraud.

Mr Hewlett has also failed to maintain adequate accounting records to explain cash withdrawals totalling 44,804.

Commenting on this case Paul Titherington, Official Receiver in the Public Interest Unit, said:

This is not a victimless crime, these trades will impact on honest competitors as well as tax payers and their families who as a result suffered the effects of funding shortages in healthcare, education and other front line services.

The Insolvency Service will not hesitate to use its enforcement powers to investigate and disqualify directors whose companies defraud the public purse.