A company director, who made false VAT claims to Her Majestys Revenue & Customs, has been hit with the maximum director disqualification.

Following a hearing in the High Court, Registrar Clive Jones ordered that Mr Olusegun Samuel Adigun be disqualified from acting as a company director for 15 years.

The disqualification was ordered after an Insolvency Service investigation found that between 1 August 2010 and 30 June 2013 HMRC paid Samuel & Associates Ltd 41,453.96 in VAT repayments based on false claims submitted by Mr Adigun who subsequently failed to provide HMRC with any records evidencing the validity of the claims, which totalled 51,983.96. The money has not been repaid.

Mr Adigun used some of the money reclaimed from HMRC to make purchases from currency dealers but subsequently provided details of bank accounts in Georgia and Latvia to receive further monies from the dealers, whom he provided with differing UK bank details to claim their amounts owed via direct debit. Those accounts were left without funds to honour the dealers claims meaning 90,000 was lost in the case of Samuel & Associates Ltd and $10,000 to Eu-Africa Business Consult. 30,000 of this money was obtained post liquidation by using the Latvian bank account to receive monies ordered in the name of the UK version of Samuel & Associates Ltd, but paid to a Latvian company using the same name.

In summary, Mr Adigun used his companies to deliberately make false VAT repayment claims from HMRC and then mislead currency dealers into handing over tens of thousands of euros and US dollars to his companies without paying them, except to some degree with money he had already falsely obtained from HMRC. Each company was registered at virtual office spaces, effectively dead letter boxes misleadingly presented as trading addresses and from which Mr Adigun failed even to arrange collection of mail.

Following the winding up of each company Mr Adigun failed to co-operate with the Official Receiver or provide any defence of his actions.