The boss of a Harlow-based lettings agency has been disqualified from being a company director for even years after he transferred £106,000 from his firm’s bank account into his personal one after a receiver was appointed for his company, Dylan Lettings Worldwide Ltd.
58-year-old Ghanshyam Sarup Batra has been a director of the company since it was incorporated 11 years ago.
But matters began to unravel after the Insolvency Service investigated the collapse of his company after a property deal went sour.
Dylan Lettings Worldwide was the managing agent of three former hotels in central London which had been converted into Airbnb-tyle holiday flats and the company also owned the leaseholds for each unit, with separate firm owning the freeholds.
But in April 2017 Batra was ordered by a court to settle arrears for the properties totalling £6.5 million but failed to do so.
A receiver was then appointed by the court over the properties and leaseholds and restrictions were placed on Batra.
These limited him from exercising his powers as a director of Dylan Lettings Worldwide or seek to act on its behalf without permission of the court or claimants.
Five months later his company went into voluntary liquidation owing at least £571,000, triggering the Insolvency Service investigation.
It found that Batra breached the court order when he transferred almost £106,000 from the company’s bank account into his own.
The first transfer of £50,000 was made just 45 minutes after the Receiver was appointed. A further £49,000 was transferred the following morning, leaving the company unable to pay its creditors.
Following this revelation, Batra has now been disqualified for seven years from directly or indirectly becoming involved, without the permission of the court, in the promotion, formation or management of a company and must pay costs of £11,500.
Lawrence Zussman, Deputy Head of Insolvent Investigations at the Insolvency Service, says: “Batra stated the monies were owed to him for outstanding rent and other business-related expenditure, but no rental agreement was in place.
“This significant ban should act as a warning to other directors who do not act in their company’s best interests that we will take action where it is appropriate to do so.”
This is now Batra’s first run-in with regulatory authorities. In 2010 he was banned from being a mortgage broker which he appealed and then lost following a 2014 Upper Tribunal decision.