A group of 14 connected property letting, investment-and-development and music companies, primarily based in Catford, South London have been ordered into liquidation by the High Court on 4 June on grounds of public interest for a string of breaches of company law.
The winding up follows an investigation by the Insolvency Service.
The companies were part of an operation run by Mr Charles Gordon, who describes himself as:
“Founder of Genetic Records, Charles Gordon Artist Management, Charles Gordon Property and Investments and writer of secrets of emPOWERment” and claimed that his“property and music empire is worth in excess of £50 million”.
The investigation found that numerous companies, including 1st Property Services UK Limited trading as ‘Property Power UK’ (dissolved 15 February 2005); Property Power UK Limited trading as both ‘Charles Gordon Estates’ and ‘Credence’ (dissolved 17 February 2009); and Refined Property Services Limited (dissolved 7 July 2009); were set up in a manner designed to be confusing and obstructive and to continue a property letting business that failed in July 2003 but which continued to operate from 151 Rushey Green, Catford, South London through a variety of companies and trading styles and most recently ‘Credence Property Services’.
The property letting and the property investment and development business was conducted through Credence Limited, Ashingtons Refined Limited, Piper London Limited, Refined (UK) Limited, Refined London Ltd, Refined 1 Limited, Kudan Homes Limited, Ambassador Homes Limited and Property Services (1) Limited.
The music business was conducted through Genetic UK Limited, Genetic Records Limited, Music and Fashion Integrated Artist Alliance Limited, Music Publishing Limited and Charles Gordon Entertainment Management Limited.
The music artists included “Big Brovaz”, “Bootyluv” and “Fe-Nix”.
Welcoming the Court’s winding up decisions Chris Mayhew, Company Investigations Supervisor at the Insolvency Service, said:
“The prolonged and systematic abuse of both the insolvency and the corporate regime enabled Mr Gordon to facilitate his personal business interests from the same Rushey Green address.
“Nobody should be left in any doubt that we will act whenever we discover there are serious failings, as here, in particular by confidence tricksters such as Mr Gordon”.
Mr Charles Gordon (see notes 15 and 16 below) and other individuals associated with the various companies used a number of aliases. In particular Mr Charles Gordon used the names Gassell Gordon, Charles Robers and Chris or Christopher Johnson.
The grounds for winding up each company are variously:
● control by Mr Gordon,
● lack of co-operation,
● filing false accounts,
● lack of transparency,
● breach of the Companies Act 2006,
● failure to file accounts and annual returns,
● enable the companies’ affairs to be fully investigated and to
● prevent them from being misused by Mr Gordon in the future.
The investigation identified that over £10 million has passed through bank accounts held by the various companies since 2005 and that the group companies are the registered owners of at least eight freehold properties and 26 leasehold properties. The combined purchase price for such properties is shown to be in excess of £9.5 million.
Notwithstanding such trading, the majority of the companies filed dormant accounts.
These include Ashingtons Refined Limited (see Note 2), where the investigation discovered that from June 2008 to September 2011 there were over 2,200 receipts and 3,100 payments with a combined value of over £3.2 million. Also Refined (UK) Limited (see Note 4) where the investigation identified there were over 5,800 transactions since November 2005 with receipts totaling nearly £2.5 million. Additionally in the case of Refined London Ltd (see Note 5) where the investigation discovered that between June 2006 and September 2011 receipts totaled over £7 million and the company also obtained loans in excess of £1.5 million. In the case of Music and Fashion Integrated Artist Alliance Limited (see Note 10) the investigation uncovered that there were transactions since April 2004 with receipts (including royalties) in excess of £1.5million
As a result of the wilful lack of co-operation on the part of all of the companies and their officers and because of the lack of accounting and other records produced to the investigation it has not been possible so far to establish the full extent of the business.