The truth is that directors just aren't learning the lessons of life. Having for so long held up Tony Danker, former head of the CBI, as their shining role model some now seem lost without a mentor.
Tony himself claimed in the Times yesterday (20 April) that he had bus wheels all over him, having been used as some kind of 'fall guy', but his former employers point out that he may have left out details of his involvement in a karaoke party and the manner in which he contacted junior employees using their private Instagram accounts. Oh, Tony, Tony Tony.
Meanwhile the Insolvency Service found that directors guilty of COVID-19 related misconduct have been hit by longer disqualification periods, with the average length of bans handed out in the last year totalling seven years and fourth months (up from five years and ten months in 2021-22). Director behaviour generally has fallen deep into the quagmire of 'could do better'.
Over 450 directors have been disqualified by the Insolvency Service in 2022-23 for abusing the COVID-19 financial support scheme, as the agency continues to clamp down on pandemic fraudsters with a paltry budget and a lot of potential targets. Of the total 932 director disqualifications obtained by the Insolvency Service in 2022-23, 459 were cases involving COVID-19 financial support scheme abuse. In addition to its civil enforcement action, the Insolvency Service also brought criminal prosecutions against six directors in 2022-23 for COVID-19 related misconduct. All of the prosecutions resulted in a conviction and resulted in immediate imprisonment in two cases.
The word 'gotcha' springs to mind.
Taking our pick of some of the worst we have come up with director Bahar Dag, who was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court to two years six months in prison, with her husband Baris Dagistan sentenced to two years, having both pleaded guilty to offences involving a fraudulent application for a Bounce Back Loan.
Bahar Dag had claimed the full £50,000 Bounce Back Loan by stating the company’s turnover was £200,000. However, it was closer to £40,000. When Insolvency Service investigators made contact, and the couple realised they had been caught, they repaid the Bounce Back Loan in full, which is nice of them, but falls squarely under the category; 'too little too late'. They now have time at His Majesty's Pleasure to fully consider their actions.