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Director given 15-year ban and suspended prison term

A Midlands-based director has been handed a six-month suspended prison sentence and the maximum directorial ban of 15 years for breaking the terms of an existing disqualification.

Valdek Hetman, 61 from Ilkeston, Nottinghamshire, was found to be running two companies despite having been banned from doing so for 10 years in July 2016.

Mr Hetman was made bankrupt for 12 months in July 2014 after being petitioned by a supplies company for unpaid bills.

He was given the 10-year ban two years later for his role in the liquidation of his business, Abbey Constructions Midlands Limited.

However, the Insolvency Service subsequently discovered that Mr Hetman was continuing to run two businesses, using accomplice Brendan Doherty as a “front-man” to hide his involvement.

When the service apprehended Mr Hetman, he claimed Mr Doherty was the “real boss” and that he worked as the contracts manager.

He also told investigators that he did not accept the facts given in the disqualification he had personally accepted in 2016.

The two men were convicted of a further offence of using the trading name Abbey Construction East Midlands Limited, which was almost identical to the name of one of Mr Hetman’s previously liquidated businesses that he had been banned from using again.

The Insolvency Service said the men had benefited from the association with the liquidated company.

Its director of criminal enforcement Arwel Jones said: “We were able to demonstrate in spite of Valdek Hetman’s assertions, he was clearly running those companies, while his accomplice Brendon Doherty knew exactly was going when he played Hetman’s front-man.

“Our actions should serve as a warning that running a company while serving a ban is a serious offence that will land you in further trouble.”

Both Mr Hetman and Mr Doherty appeared at Derby Crown Court last month.

Mr Hetman pleaded guilty to two counts of managing a company while disqualified and one count of managing a business known by a prohibited name.

In addition to his ban and suspended prison sentence, he was also ordered to complete 120 hours of unpaid work and pay £750 costs.

Mr Doherty pleaded guilty to one count of assisting Valdek Hetman to act in the management of companies. He was given a five-year director ban and fined £600.

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