Terence Thorogood and Paul Curtis, directors of Chase Devonshire Limited, who manage rental properties in South London, have been disqualified from acting as directors for a total of nine years for failing to secure over 110 tenant deposits, contrary to government guidelines. This follows an investigation by The Insolvency Service.
The investigation found the directors also failed to pay over rental monies they had collected on behalf of landlords. The tenancy deposit guidelines were introduced by the government to protect tenants deposits held by either landlords or the landlords agents.
Mr Thorogood, 38, the Managing Director of Chase Devonshire Limited (Chase) was banned for six years while Mr Curtis, 52, was banned for three years for his role in the company. The disqualifications restrict them from in any way managing or controlling limited companies for the duration of their bans.
The investigation by the Insolvency Service found that Mr Thorogood failed to secure more than 110 deposits, with a value of more than 180,000, in a government approved tenancy deposit scheme in breach of s.213 of the Housing Act 2004.
Mr Thorogood also failed to make sure that more than 335,000 in rent which Chase had collected on behalf of landlords, going back to May 2009, was passed on to them. The company went into liquidation in November 2010 owing more than 700,000 to its creditors.
The investigation found that while Mr Thorogood was in charge of the management and letting side of the business, Mr Curtis, who was managing the sales and property investment arm of the business, neglected his duties as a director by not playing an active part in all aspects of Chases business.
Commenting on the disqualifications, Robert Clarke, Head of Company Investigations Birmingham said:
"Directors who hold money in trust for others and then abuse the trust are a scourge on society.
The undertakings signed by Mr Thorogood and Mr Curtis send a clear message to other company directors that if you run a business in a way that is detrimental to either its customers or its creditors you could be investigated by the Insolvency Service and as a result removed from the business environment.