Mr Safiullah Alam, who was the company secretary of AGF Cuisine Ltd, a takeaway restaurant in East London, has been disqualified for five*years.

The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy accepted a disqualification undertaking from Mr Alam, disqualifying him for five years from 15 December 2017.

An Insolvency Service investigation found Mr Alam caused inaccurate statutory VAT returns to be submitted to Her Majesty?s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) on behalf of AGF Cuisine Ltd. Although not formally appointed as a director of AGF Cuisine Ltd, his role in the company was that of a director.

Mr Alam?s disqualification follows collaboration between the Insolvency Service and HMRC.

An in depth HMRC investigation including a till interrogation, revealed suppression of takings and also identified sales from debit/credit card takings that had been omitted from submitted VAT returns. In total, HMRC raised assessments of ?54,829 and a penalty of ?26,536 to the company deeming the actions were deliberate.

At liquidation the company was stated as owing in excess of ?187,000 to HMRC in relation to arrears of VAT, PAYE and National Insurance Contributions, Corporation Tax and penalties.

Commenting on the disqualification, Lawrence Zussman, Deputy Head of Investigations for the Insolvency Service said:

Much of the public service is funded by the correct amount of taxes being paid. By not declaring and paying the correct amount of taxes, the public has been deprived from receiving the services it deserves from the public sector.

The Insolvency Service will not hesitate to take action against directors so they cannot abuse limited liability provided by trading through a company.