Two garage bosses have been banned after they allowed a disqualified director, who happened to be their husband and ex-husband respectively, to run their company.
Janice Rogers, 61, and Elizabeth Dagg, 70 – who now cannot act as a director of a company, among other restrictions – were directors of Auto Testing Limited (ATL).
Incorporated in February 2007, it operated as a car mechanics, fuel station and convenience store.
There was also a third boss, Stewart Rogers. All three are from the Morpeth area.
But the 72-year-old had been previously disqualified for five years in January 2011 in relation to his conduct as director of a separate company, Northern 4x4 Centre Ltd, and should not have been managing the business.
The company entered voluntary liquidation in October 2016 and the Insolvency Service – a government agency sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – was tipped off to Mr Rogers’ involvement.
Investigators were able to gather evidence which showed that Mr Rogers had been running ATL and Mrs Rogers, his current wife, and Ms Dagg, his ex-wife, had been aware of his disqualification.
On October 17, the Secretary of State accepted a disqualification undertaking from Mr Rogers after he admitted acting as director whilst disqualified. On the same day, disqualification undertakings were accepted from Mrs Rogers and Ms Dagg after both admitted allowing Mr Rogers to act as director whilst disqualified.
Mr Rogers’ ban is effective from November 7 and lasts for 11 years.
The bans for Mrs Rogers and Ms Dagg are effective from the same date and last for five years.
Robert Clarke, chief investigator for the Insolvency Service, said: “Our investigation showed that Stewart Rogers was acting as a director of Auto Testing Limited in direct breach of the earlier disqualification undertaking he had given, and that Janice Rogers and Elizabeth Dagg had allowed him to do so.
“The Insolvency Service will vigorously pursue directors who ignore disqualification restrictions against them, as well as those that allow such directors to act.
“The length of the undertakings in this case sends a clear message that such behaviour will not be tolerated.”
A disqualification order has the effect that without specific permission of a court, a person with a disqualification cannot act as a director of a company and there are other restrictions.
Disqualification undertakings are the administrative equivalent of a disqualification order, but do not involve court proceedings.