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PostPosted: Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jonttt wrote:
in the context of Mrs Samantha mearns selling her share before taking public office


Mrs Samantha Mearns was an elected Councillor of Knaresborough Scriven Park
in May 2018

https://democracy.harrogate.gov.uk/mgUserInfo.aspx?UID=495
Home address:
Appletrees
Main Street
Scotton
Knaresborough
HG5 9HY

https://www.harrogate.gov.uk/download/downloads/id/3874/district_election_2018_results.pdf

but she did not resign from Gmund Cars Ltd tlll December 2018
https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/officers/bhgOWW-O_rC2XdTun1nkkZkaQjo/appointments
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patpending
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the nice lady is still holding shares in the company when I last looked,
 
  
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 17, 2019 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

patpending wrote:
I think the nice lady is still holding shares in the company when I last looked,


https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/06023490/filing-history

Ref, 19 Dec 2018, the Confirmation statement made on 8 December 2018 with updates View PDF (4 pages)
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Johnd52
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mrs Mearns seems to have transferred (to her husband?)her shares just prior to the confirmation statement being submitted. Possibly this was the time at which she realised that she was holding a liability rather than an asset.

It suggests that they could have known at this point that the Company was insolvent, but Andrew Mears decided to keep going.
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Tombri
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Has anyone actually contacted the Police about this?

Despite Jonttt's cynicism about it not being a speeding offence, it is surely worth at least flagging it up - maybe at the local Police station. What harm can it do and you never know - you may just get someone prepared to a little investigating. Cop
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patpending
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jonttt wrote:
patpending wrote:
https://www.cps.gov.uk/sites/default/files/documents/legal_guidance/Annex%2520A%2520Companies%2520Act.pdf

Ref 993(1) thought that was a bit funny given it’s a Porsche forum/thread 😁


Im missing something, where does that apply to shareholders Dont know

Shadow directors yes ie in the context of Mrs Samantha mearns selling her share before taking public office when she must have known what was going on but the relevent part of that is did she continue to act as / hold herself out as a director / "assist" in business matters / benefit from the fraud. Being a shareholder does not automatically mean you are liable for that fraud, that's why companies have directors ie to direct business on behalf of the shareholders but the shareholders do not make day to day business decisions.


To clarify - nobody(inc shareholder(s) is/are automatically liable for any fraud but what is being stated is that current or former directors or shareholders of a company can also become liable if wrongdoing or criminal activity is established and people are deemed to be culpable

The proceeds of crime law is extensive and can also be used in cases where any individuals are deemed to have financially benefitted from crime, even if a crime(ie theft or fraud) may have been committed by someone else.

Dividends, company activities, patterns and disbursements etc can all be looked at in detail and if the CPS get their teeth into something people had better be squeaky clean as they have experts in this field of investigation.

If there are multiple people on a forum who suspect wrongdoing they should link up and report the matter jointly as it carries far more weight.
 
  
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easternjets
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice house, according to records worth around £585,000, should pay off a few of his debts if he owns it?
As he/they have owned it since 2000 when they bought it for £200,000 then it has a chunk of equity in it.
Anyone know if his place of business is still open?
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DAVIDGT996
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 10:59 am    Post subject: Director Loan - £334K Reply with quote

Any noticed that the last set of accounts filed at Companies House showed Andrew Mearns had £334K of his own money invested in the company as well money from the (family?) pension trust which took a legal charge over 3 cars so I assume they will take those from stock when the Charge is enforced.

It will be the appointed liquidators duty to make a report to the Insolvency service on the conduct of the Director. I doubt that he will get anything other than a Director Ban and with a 'fiendly' liquidator appointed will phoenix to start again with somebody else as a front.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

patpending wrote:
jonttt wrote:
patpending wrote:
https://www.cps.gov.uk/sites/default/files/documents/legal_guidance/Annex%2520A%2520Companies%2520Act.pdf

Ref 993(1) thought that was a bit funny given it’s a Porsche forum/thread 😁


Im missing something, where does that apply to shareholders Dont know

Shadow directors yes ie in the context of Mrs Samantha mearns selling her share before taking public office when she must have known what was going on but the relevent part of that is did she continue to act as / hold herself out as a director / "assist" in business matters / benefit from the fraud. Being a shareholder does not automatically mean you are liable for that fraud, that's why companies have directors ie to direct business on behalf of the shareholders but the shareholders do not make day to day business decisions.


To clarify - nobody(inc shareholder(s) is/are automatically liable for any fraud but what is being stated is that current or former directors or shareholders of a company can also become liable if wrongdoing or criminal activity is established and people are deemed to be culpable

The proceeds of crime law is extensive and can also be used in cases where any individuals are deemed to have financially benefitted from crime, even if a crime(ie theft or fraud) may have been committed by someone else.

Dividends, company activities, patterns and disbursements etc can all be looked at in detail and if the CPS get their teeth into something people had better be squeaky clean as they have experts in this field of investigation.

If there are multiple people on a forum who suspect wrongdoing they should link up and report the matter jointly as it carries far more weight.


Agreed Thumb
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easternjets
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That £334k is around about the equity he has in his property, so it's more than likely he remortgaged.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:11 am    Post subject: Stakeholder Account Reply with quote

Solicitors & Estate Agents who hold client money need to operate a seperate client bank account away from the main business bank account i.e 'ring fenced'. They are subject to audit by qualified Auditors if they want to hold practising certficates or membership of Professional Bodies.

So anyone who puts their car up under SOR then the sensible thing to do is arrange/ have an agreement for any sale proceeds to be placed into a stakeholder account in both parties names so that not one party is able to withdraw the money without the other party's conesnt.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:21 am    Post subject: Re: Director Loan - £334K Reply with quote

DAVIDGT996 wrote:
...........

It will be the appointed liquidators duty to make a report to the Insolvency service on the conduct of the Director. I doubt that he will get anything other than a Director Ban and with a 'fiendly' liquidator appointed will phoenix to start again with somebody else as a front.


To be fair the government has really been tightening up on this sort of thing ie:

- all transaction taken before liquidation which where made whilst insolvent to the detriment of creditors can be reversed

- a directors ban involves you agreeing to NOT act as a director in any capacity for the period of the ban. Whilst you can hold shares and be a senior manager you cannot make day to day decision on the running of the business. If you do it is a criminal offence. They have, so I've heard on the grapevine, been enforcing this where people have clearly been acting as "shadow" directors whilst banned.

The main issue however is the criminal nature of the families activities and the complete breach of trust and fiduciary duty. That is sinply something the police should be investigating irrespective of the accounting / liquidation / administration process. The more publicity and mounting evidence of this the more pressure the police will have on them to actually do something against this serial fraudster. For all my scepticism the police are hardly going to put a sign up saying what they are doing. All we can do is make as much noise as possible and help bring victims together and ultimately, if need be use people power to shine a very bright light on the Mearns family activities Bandit
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:26 am    Post subject: Re: Stakeholder Account Reply with quote

DAVIDGT996 wrote:
Solicitors & Estate Agents who hold client money need to operate a seperate client bank account away from the main business bank account i.e 'ring fenced'. They are subject to audit by qualified Auditors if they want to hold practising certficates or membership of Professional Bodies.

So anyone who puts their car up under SOR then the sensible thing to do is arrange/ have an agreement for any sale proceeds to be placed into a stakeholder account in both parties names so that not one party is able to withdraw the money without the other party's conesnt.


The problem with this is :

a) we do not actually now the contractual relationship of the SOR and thus the status of both the "asset" (ie car) or proceeds of sale (nb that is not necessarily cash as we know other assets have been used as a means of payment)

b) you need to be a regulated entity to get bank trust fund accounts. The car industry in this respect is not regulated and thus no bank would give them a formal trust fund account to segregate client funds (even if the nature of the SOR contract is covered under client funds criteria). Thus "best" practice would be to have a segregated "client fund" bank account. However as this would not be a true trust account the bank and creditors can use such fund to offset company debts.
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DAVIDGT996
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:27 am    Post subject: Re: Director Loan - £334K Reply with quote

[quote="jonttt"]
DAVIDGT996 wrote:
...........
To be fair the government has really been tightening up on this sort of thing ie:

- all transaction taken before liquidation which where made whilst insolvent to the detriment of creditors can be reversed

- a directors ban involves you agreeing to NOT act as a director in any capacity for the period of the ban. Whilst you can hold shares and be a senior manager you cannot make day to day decision on the running of the business. If you do it is a criminal offence. They have, so I've heard on the grapevine, been enforcing this where people have clearly been acting as "shadow" directors whilst banned.
As a Qualified Accountant running my my own Practice I deal with a few liquidators. The all say trying to enforce the 'shadow' Director activity is extremely difficult and very rarely happens.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ps just to add that in theory an ESCROW account would be more appropriate for this type of SOR transaction. I have no real experience of those other than to say if they are anything like other financial products which involve a bank taking any form of risk they will be like rocking horse #### to get or you will be forced to use none high street providers who will charge high facility costs.

In this day and age AIM regulations means banks are very reluctant to offer any financial products on an ad hoc basis.

All I can see so far is that SOR is effectively you giving a car over and becoming a creditor of the company therefore there is always the risk they will default on that debt. That is assuming Mr Means even recorded the transaction in the company account, in which case as a creditor the administrator has to contact you. If not in the company books then Mr Mearns would have no doubt questions to be answered to HMRC and would be personally liable for the debt ie outside of the protection of a Limited company.
The last set of account (from end 2017) do show a high value of "stock" which presumably are cars for sale so that suggests the nature of the SOR agreement was in effect a trade creditor arrangement Dont know

It would be good to see a copy of an actual SOR agreement to try to understand / confirm the status of the transaction in accounting terms (if indeed there was one formally written up and signed) Judge
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:48 am    Post subject: Re: Director Loan - £334K Reply with quote

[quote="DAVIDGT996"]
jonttt wrote:
DAVIDGT996 wrote:
...........
To be fair the government has really been tightening up on this sort of thing ie:

- all transaction taken before liquidation which where made whilst insolvent to the detriment of creditors can be reversed

- a directors ban involves you agreeing to NOT act as a director in any capacity for the period of the ban. Whilst you can hold shares and be a senior manager you cannot make day to day decision on the running of the business. If you do it is a criminal offence. They have, so I've heard on the grapevine, been enforcing this where people have clearly been acting as "shadow" directors whilst banned.
As a Qualified Accountant running my my own Practice I deal with a few liquidators. The all say trying to enforce the 'shadow' Director activity is extremely difficult and very rarely happens.


Of course they do Wink

Like anything in life, you get out of something a direct proportion of what effort you put in. In this context I'm sure if a "pheonix" new business was put in place it would be fairly easy to get evidence of "director" activities of the banned party. With the obvious "interest" of the Porsche community which feels hard done by they would be taking a massive risk in that respect.
There are lots of less formal ways that information can be used in the real world. By way of example often banking is the achilles heal I have used to effectively stop businesses from trading in these situations. The banks are ultra paranoid re AML regs and KYC (Know your customer). Someone would need to falsify declarations to get a new bank account open and source of startup funds (banks now need clear evidence of this). Any suggestion by a friendly word with their compliance teams can result in accounts being frozen without notice where there is evidence of false declarations Hand
There are other, even more effective things that can be done by a grieved party with a matter of principle to prove (rather than financial reward) to stop these pheonix type creditor avoidance schemes which I'm obviously not going to post on an open forum.

The bottom line is that the Mearns family should pay for their crimes. If that means an "adjustment" to their lifestyle eg smaller house, no foreign holidays then so be it, you make your bed, you lie in it but on the face of it the materiality of the crimes (may be 7 figures over the years) means that there has to be a chance of jail time. The fact that it looks like they have been trading for years on an insolvent basis would be a big factor in that. Even the fact the Mrs Mearns is a "trusted" Cllr and none practising solicitor (as she appears to like to tell everyone) would be important in terms of the severity of the breach of trust.
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997 Coast
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am being in fortunate position of saying farewell to work after a lifetime in business.

Bandit European River Cruise imminent

---------------------------------------------------

During that time it was important to me that I was true both to my clients and to my staff.

A good style of life at work and at home, was and remains a fine ethic.


Gmund Cars business practice is corrupt ! jonttt states a great deal of sense

Andrew Mearns/Gmund requires to be given a term in prison for fraud.
 
  
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Gazc2
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As Nick says do we know the actual position of the business at the moment is it open/closed/administration ?
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

exactly
 
  
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gazc2 wrote:
As Nick says do we know the actual position of the business at the moment is it open/closed/administration ?


posts on here from last week suggest "closed" but activity going on and he continues to pay his landlord = dispursement of company assets ie cash whilst known to be insolvent ie prioritising one creditor over others Hand can be reveresed by the administrator. I would love to see his landlords face when he is asked to pay back the rent he has received Grin
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