Former Sheffield restaurant owner jailed

The former Flaming Dragon restaurant at Valley Centertainment
The former Flaming Dragon restaurant at Valley Centertainment
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A former Sheffield restaurant owner has been jailed after admitting three counts of failing to preserve company books and accounting records.

William To, aged 54, was jailed for 33 weeks at Milton Keynes Magistrates’ Court earlier this month for offences relating to three separate restaurant management companies.

The three BMBQ Ltd, Shef Ltd and Broads Cat Ltd, based in Sheffield and Birmingham, went into liquidation with an as-yet-unpaid combined debt of £302,105 to HM Revenue & Customs.

In Sheffield, To was behind Flaming Dragon, which was based at Valley Centertainment Leisure Park until its failure in 2012.

In Birmingham, To was behind Broadway Plaza’s Dragon BBQ and Flaming Dragon, which was based on Broad Street until its failure in 2012.

The investigation found the director had failed to ensure the companies were in order and so could not be delivered up to the liquidator as required.

In the absence of books and records, the Insolvency Service was prevented from accurately investigating the reasons for the failures of the companies and from protecting any existing assets.

To’s conviction follows an initial investigation by the Insolvency Service and a full criminal investigation and prosecution by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS).

BIS deputy chief investigation officer Simon Button said: “The Insolvency Service and the Department for Business will take firm action when we find that office holders of limited companies have clearly failed to comply with their legal responsibilities and this has led to an undermining of the insolvency regime.”