A property director has been disqualified for 12 years after claiming Covid ‘bounce back loans’ fraudulently.
Brendan Michael Gaughan from Glasgow took out the government-backed loans totalling £135,000 that his companies were not eligible for.
Gaughan was director of three separate property management companies, Gaughan Group Ltd, Gaughan Property Ltd, and Rentl Property Ltd. They were only incorporated in February 2020 and did not trade until April 2020.
The companies were not eligible for funds through the Bounce Back Loan (BBL) scheme, as it was only available to firms that had been doing business on 1 March 2020.
Gaughan Group received a BBL of £50,000, Gaughan Property received a BBL also of £50,000, and Rentl Property Ltd received a BBL of £35,000.
Gaughan transferred all the funds into a single account and proceeded to use the money to buy a property worth nearly £160,000 in August 2020. He then sold the property in March 2021 for just over £140,000, and on the same day transferred £100,000 of the proceeds to his personal account.
All three companies were put into liquidation in October 2021, which triggered an investigation by the Insolvency Service.
Steven McGinty, investigation manager at the Insolvency Service, says “Bounce Back Loans were made available for trading companies adversely affected by the pandemic. Brendan Gaughan should have known his companies weren’t entitled to the loans yet he took them anyway and used the funds for personal gain.
“We will not hesitate to take action against directors who have abused Covid-19 financial support like this.”