Travel boss banned over £400k unexplained payments

The director of a Chatham-based travel agency has been banned for seven years after a lack of accounts meant it was not possible to explain thousands of pounds worth of company payments

ICharter Ltd was incorporated in November 2014 as a travel agency for private clients, with offices in Chatham, Kent with a sole director, Helen Jacobs.

The company entered into creditors voluntary liquidation on 5 March 2018 after it could not pay debts of more than £127,000.

A subsequent investigation by the Insolvency Service into Jacobs’ conduct established that from December 2015 she had failed to maintain ICharter’s books and records.

As a result, it has not been possible to determine whether various payments from the company’s account worth close to £400,000 were made in the normal course of business. This included £193,000 paid to Jacobs’ account and more than £186,000 in debit card transactions.

Martin Gitner, deputy head of insolvent investigations at the Insolvency Service, said: ‘Helen Jacobs had a vast amount of experience in the travel industry and should have known that directors have a duty to maintain and preserve a record of financial transactions.

‘This seven-year ban should reinforce to company directors the importance of maintaining accurate accounts.’

Pat Sweet

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