Terry Robin Patten, a former bankrupt, has been sentenced to a total of three years imprisonment after pleading guilty to seven counts which included obtaining property by deception, concealing debts and forgery, following a hearing at Bournemouth Crown Court (sitting at Dorchester) on 18 June.
Mr Patten’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).
The investigation showed that between April and July 2005, Terry Patten obtained £38,000 from two individuals, telling them that he would be purchasing three vehicles for his business. In reality the vehicles were not purchased and Mr Patten pocketed the money.
The investigation also showed that In April 2007, Mr Patten was adjudged bankrupt but concealed the debts of two of his creditors owed approximately £140,000, thus preventing them from making a claim in his bankruptcy.
Both of these creditors were people who had loaned him money he claimed he needed to expand his business. This proved to untrue as the money was never used for this purpose.
Furthermore, In 2008 Mr Patten forged documents from the Official Receiver and the Bournemouth County Court in order to further prevent a creditor from making a claim in his bankruptcy.
Commenting on the sentence, Deputy Chief Investigating Officer, Liam Mannall, from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said:
“Over a period of time Mr Patten displayed a pattern of dishonesty and deceit which continued during his bankruptcy. The sentence imposed clearly reflects the courts view of the seriousness of such misconduct.
“Bankruptcy is a resort for those seeking relief from overwhelming debt. In return, such individuals are required to be open and honest about their debts and their assets, Mr Patten was not.
“The Department for Business Innovation and Skills will rigorously pursue those who attempt to abuse the bankruptcy regime, as Mr Patten has found to his cost.”