back to article Cold calling director struck off for ‘flagrant’ breach of duties

The cash-splashing director of a nuisance call biz has been struck off for 12 years after breaking telemarketing rules and trading while insolvent. Tony Abbott was the sole director of Reactiv Media, based in England, which used its large database of UK customers to make unsolicited direct marketing calls for a range of …

  1. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Struck off as a director

      Have you any idea how inconvenient it is to get a partner to set up a business for you? All that form filling and stuff.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Struck off as a director

        "Have you any idea how inconvenient it is to get a partner to set up a business for you? All that form filling and stuff."

        That may be, but there's definitely some on here who do such a thing to avoid paying costs they owe. One such reader on this forum has a company that owns nothing, everything is rented from another company a family member of their's owns. So when you go after them for money, well it's all set up to give creditors nothing.

        AC for obvious reasons.

        1. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: Struck off as a director

          "One such reader on this forum has a company that owns nothing, everything is rented from another company a family member of their's owns."

          If you can prove that (and the business connections) then you can probably have a stab at recovery (and HMRC would probably be interested too)

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            @Alan Brown

            "If you can prove that (and the business connections) then you can probably have a stab at recovery (and HMRC would probably be interested too)"

            HMRC were informed about it (amongst other things), but I heard nothing more about it. Not that I'm bothered by it any more. Karma's a powerful thing.

      2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Struck off as a director

        "Have you any idea how inconvenient it is to get a partner to set up a business for you?"

        It's not an area of company law that ever impinged on my activities but might using 3rd party directors actually be included in the ban given, I assume, that beneficial ownership could be proved?

      3. TheVogon Silver badge

        Re: Struck off as a director

        "Have you any idea how inconvenient it is to get a partner to set up a business for you? All that form filling and stuff."

        Have you any idea how illegal that is on both sides? You can be prosecuted, imprisoned and become personally liable for the company’s debts if you carry out company business on the instructions of someone who’s disqualified.

        1. kain preacher Silver badge

          Re: Struck off as a director

          Like criminals care that they are breaking the law.

      4. Tigra 07 Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Struck off as a director

        Judging from how this guy runs his businesses and the debts is he married to Diane Abbott?

        1. Mike Shepherd
          Happy

          Re: Struck off as a director

          "Judging from how this guy runs his businesses and the debts is he married to Diane Abbott?"

          Your icon is appropriate: that would drive anyone to drink.

      5. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Coat

        Re: Struck off as a director. how inconvenient it is to get a partner to set up a business for you?

        Not even that.

        Watch out for any new unlimited liability partnerships being set up.* He sounds dodgy as f**k. Very much a "What's mine is mine, what's yours is mine, and what I own is still mine" mentality.

        You'd be pretty stupid to be a supplier to this guy. Guaranteed he wont' pay o time to start with.

        *This used to be the legal form for doctors, lawyers and accounts practices but new ones are limited liability. They are simply obsolete. Unless you want to be scrutiny or can't be in charge of any other business legally.

  2. Bob Vistakin
    Facepalm

    The takeaway message: It's worth the risk

    You win and you're a couple of houses up, you lose and you have to get a mate to run things if you want to try again?

  3. Terry 6 Silver badge

    Meanwhile

    No fines were paid and there's no mention of the b*****ds who used this service. Why aren't they named and shamed?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There was a time...

    ... when not paying HMRC won you free board & lodgings at Her Majesty's pleasure.

    1. Zippy's Sausage Factory

      Re: There was a time...

      Indeed.

      I once had a letter from HMRC asking what I was doing for four months because they'd not had any contributions on my behalf for that time. I assumed at the time it was a mistake rather than anything sinister, and I never heard anything more about it, but maybe that was a mistake...

      1. Blotto Bronze badge
        Paris Hilton

        Re: There was a time...

        @Zippy

        They probably investigated you without you knowing by checking your bank accounts, credit cards, mobile phone movements, passport records, loyalty cards, Internet records etc. They probably decided that all that p*****b traffic during the day pretty much meant you where not earning at the time.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    > that all that p*****b traffic

    $ egrep -i "^p.*b$" /var/lib/dict/words

    paystub

    Pb

    PBB

    PCB

    pedicab

    perturb

    pleb

    plumb

    Polab

    potherb

    prefab

    Presb

    preverb

    prob

    proverb

    pseudobulb

    pub

    Punjab

    $ egrep -i "^p.....b$" /var/lib/dict/words

    paystub

    pedicab

    perturb

    potherb

    preverb

    proverb

    ???

    1. Jediben

      P...orn...hub

      1. RegGuy1

        P...orn...hub

        = p*n h*b

    2. PNGuinn
      Trollface

      @$ egrep -i "^p.*b$" /var/lib/dict/words

      Pubbing in a prefab in the proverbial Punjab, obviously. you potherb.

  6. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

    This sounds remarkably similar...

    ...as the firm received "unjustified grant funds" of £38,326 from Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, after Abbott provided inaccurate information....

    ...to the illegal activity called 'fraud'. Fraud attracts a criminal charge, and if found guilty, you could be imprisoned for some considerable time.

    I wonder why there's no mention of fraud amongst these alleged misdeeds?

    1. phuzz Silver badge

      Re: This sounds remarkably similar...

      It's possible that other charges are still on their way from other bits of the government or civil suits on behalf of creditors.

      Lets hope so eh?

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: This sounds remarkably similar...

      "I wonder why there's no mention of fraud amongst these alleged misdeeds?"

      That happens later.

      The thing about criminal/illegal activities is that they seldom happen as an isolated item. (and that's why stopping a car on fake plates might catch you a Yorkshire Ripper)

  7. Flywheel Silver badge
    FAIL

    Re: Struck off as a director

    As someone who's currently pursuing a well-known fly-by-night who goes under several variations of name and a wide selection of addresses, I have to say that striking off will have bugger-all effect. Following a long and tiresome discussion with Companies House, they actually admitted that they don't actually check registrants out in enough detail to actually stop false/dubious registrations. It largely relies on people being honest and truthful, which is why we're in the mess we're in right now.

    1. katrinab Silver badge

      Re: Struck off as a director

      s/enough\ detail/any\ detail/

      The only thing they check is whether they received the registration fee.

  8. Tigra 07 Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    Very curious that the company liabilities are pretty much exactly the amount this guy had spent on his two new houses and the grant...But, i'm sure that's just a coincidence...

  9. Velv Silver badge
    FAIL

    "Tony Abbott" just got struck off, but "Anthony Abbott" is opening new businesses as we speak

    (I don't know if he really is, but it's simple to use a variation on your name on company registrations)

    1. TheVogon Silver badge

      "(I don't know if he really is, but it's simple to use a variation on your name on company registrations)"

      But it's not so simple to change your National Insurance number that is also required on registrations. Not to mention the 2 years in prison that doing so would possibly incur!

      1. katrinab Silver badge

        You don't need a national insurance number

        See https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/register-a-private-or-public-company-in01 for what you do need.

        A lot of people who register companies in the UK don't live here, and don't have national insurance numbers.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Tigra 07 Silver badge
      Trollface

      RE: Velv

      Betting his company accountant is his wife...Diane...

  10. Potemkine! Silver badge

    Jersey and Isle of Man

    Does this condemnation also extend to these tax heavens?

  11. beerandbiscuits

    Getting your mate to open a company is a nice idea, but if you get caught, you're just as guilty as it you set up the company yourself. The Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986 says that someone who has had an order made against him

    "shall not be a director of a company, act as receiver of a company’s property or in any way, whether directly or indirectly, be concerned or take part in the promotion, formation or management of a company".

    The big problem, as mentioned above, is the fact that no one is responsible for checking on disqualified directors to make sure they're complying (checking company registrations would be pointless if the disqualified director was not on the application, which is nearly always the case). When they do get caught though, they invariably go to prison, max sentence 2 years and a fine. One I know of last year got 18 months.

    As for AC above whose friend's company owns nothing, if his friend really thinks that will stop his creditors getting hold of his assets, he's an idiot. There are many ways to pursue such companies and their directors (real or shadow) and it's a rare case when they get away without losing considerably more than their debts when the costs have to be paid as well.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "There are many ways to pursue such companies and their directors (real or shadow) "

      I was advised to approach "Travellers Debt Recovery Solutions" and sell them the debt.

      * Or just any bunch of pikeys really.

  12. Bill M

    Nigel Farage

    Maybe sentence him to have Nigel Farage move in with him as a rent free lodger.

    Any suggestions who should move in rent free to his other house ?

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    £38,326 from Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership

    ah, so where do I sign up?! And, unlike our hero, I'm all legit! No, but really, would I lie to you?!

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    As well as racking up these debts, the firm also broke the laws

    methinks the article is incomplete, fails to mention he rots in jail, eh?

    ...

    oh, I see...

    really?

    oh well, good for him!

  15. unwarranted triumphalism

    Let's get some perspective here

    Obviously some kind of administrative oversight for which he's being unfairly punished.

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Unhappy

      Obviously some kind of administrative oversight for which he's being unfairly punished.

      Demonstrating why sarcasm is so tricky to pull off on the interwebs, and why we have a "Joke" icon

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