The director of a firm claiming to offer investments in fine wines has been disqualified as a director for 11 years, following an investigation by the Insolvency Service
Following an investigation by the Insolvency Service, Scott Andrews the sole director of London-based Capital Bordeaux Investments Limited, has been disqualified as a director for 11 years. The company targeted victims of previous wine investment scams and misled them into believing it could assist them in recovering their losses. The scam involved using false and misleading advertising material in order to induce members of the public into paying for wine, which the company then failed to provide.
Capital Bordeaux Investments Limited was finally shut down by the courts last year, but not before at least 10 members of the public paid the company a total of £59,750 for the acquisition of fine wine as an investment product. The petition to wind up the company was presented by the Secretary of State for Business, Innovations and Skills on the 14 May 2014, in the public interest following an investigation conducted by Company Investigations (Live), another specialist unit within the Insolvency Service which uses powers under the Companies Act 1985 to conduct confidential enquiries into the activities of live limited companies in the UK on behalf of the Secretary of State for Business, Innovations & Skills (BIS).
Each of those customers was advised by the company that their wine would be held within a government regulated bonded warehouse. In fact, the company deposited no wine into the accounts of its investors and the bank statements for the company indicated that it never even purchased the wine.
Commenting on this case Paul Titherington, Official Receiver in the Public Interest Unit, said: “It was Mr Andrews and his salesmen who benefited from this company rather than its honest investors. He misled members of the public and took their money without providing them with the goods they’d been promised. Anyone showing such blatant disregard for commercial morality should expect to be banned from running any limited company for a lengthy period time.”
The Official Receiver’s investigation found that the company failed to provide any goods or services for which it was paid. The marketing materials for the company stated it had been trading since 1995, although Andrews was only six years old in 1995, and the company was in fact not incorporated until April 2012.
In addition, Andrews failed to maintain, preserve or deliver up the accounting records for Capital Bordeaux Investments Limited, preventing the Official Receiver from establishing whether the company had additional investors or hidden assets.
The disqualification regime exists to protect the public. Scott Elliott Andrews’ disqualification from 19 August 2015 means that he cannot promote, manage, or be a director of a limited company until 19 August 2026.
This disqualification follows an investigation by the Official Receiver at Public Interest Unit, a specialist team of the Insolvency Service, whose involvement commenced with the winding up of the company in the public interest following an investigation by Company Investigations into the affairs of the company.