A director has received a second disqualification after he was caught running a business when he had already been banned.
The Insolvency Service, which published the report, said director Matthew Lasebikan ran an Asian-style takeaway restaurant “under the guise of several different companies”.
The director was first banned in February 2016 for three-and-a-half years after he caused his company to run up significant tax debts between 2014 and 2016.
The disqualification restricted Mr Lasebikan from directly or indirectly becoming involved, without the permission of the court, in the promotion, formation or management of a company.
However, it was later discovered that Mr Lasebikan had employed his chef to act as the director of another one of his companies shortly after undertaking his disqualification order.
The Insolvency Service said the chef who was appointed the director of the company “was merely a patsy” as Mr Lasebikan had continued to effectively run the business in direct contravention of his ban.
The business owner’s illicit activities were discovered after his second business went into liquidation in December 2016 with liabilities of just over £86,000 – shining a spotlight on the company’s management structure.
In court, Mr Lasebikan accepted a second disqualification order after he admitted acting as a director whilst subject to a disqualification undertaking and without getting leave of the court to do so. He was handed a further ban of 11 years.
Commenting on the case, David Elliott, Chief Investigator for the Insolvency Service said: “Matthew Lasebikan thought he had got round his disqualification by having one of his employee’s names on the records, while he still ran the show behind the scenes.
“Both Matthew Lasebikan and [the chef] were at fault and their bans should serve as an important warning that people who accept disqualifications or appointments as directors should be fully aware of their duties.”