Tax-swerving IT director disqualified for 8 years

Paid himself £40k when biz was insolvent, says

Anthony Hodges, a Basingstoke-based IT consultant, has been barred from acting as a company director for eight years due to mischief undertaken as his company went into liquidation.

Investigating the demise of management consultancy Hodges & Coley, of which Hodges was the sole director, the Insolvency Service said it had discovered that he had failed to ensure his business had paid its tax liabilities from January 2011 until January 2014, when the company went into liquidation.

This resulted in a liability to HMRC of over £191,000 at the date of liquidation, but according to investigators, during that period Hodges paid only £3,100 to HMRC and "at least" £423,024 to himself and his family. This left creditors with a total deficiency of over £220,000 at the time of liquidation, said the Insolvency Service.

Of the £423,000 Hodges had collected from the company, more than £41,000 was pocketed when the business was insolvent and after his accountant had been informed of Hodges' intention to liquidate the company.

Robert Clarke, the head of Insolvent Investigations North at the Insolvency Service, said: "Company directors have a duty to ensure businesses meet their legal obligations, including paying taxes and must not benefit themselves at the expense of creditors.

"Neglect of tax affairs is not a victimless action as it deprives the taxpayer of the funds needed to operate public services," added Clarke. ®

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