Belfast Telegraph

Directors and wives penalised after £3m collapse

By Margaret Canning

Two big names in the licensed trade and their wives have been disqualified as directors after their firms went bust owing £3m.

Former Wineworld bosses Stephen Lavery and Ian Newell were barred from the boardoom for a decade each by DETI over four companies which all went into administration in 2008.

Wineworld, which had six pubs and off licences in Co Down, owed £1.57m when it went under.

Mr Lavery (48), of Cleland Park North in Bangor, Mr Newell (41), and his wife Vanessa (38), both from Warren Road in Donaghdee, accepted unfit conduct including misusing company funds by lending to connected parties, depriving Wineworld of £673,000, going into deals of no commercial benefit and failing to file records on time on three occasions.

Lecale Inns owed £303,000 when it folded. The two men admitted trading while insolvent for nearly two years and failing to file records on time twice.

The ban handed to Mr Lavery and his wife Colette, also of Cleland Park North, also sanctions them for dealings at Begney Property, while Mr Newell and his wife were sanctioned for their conduct at Jewell Developments. Mrs Lavery was disqualified for three years and Mrs Newell for five years.

Begney Property, which ran two pubs, owed £23,900 when it folded. Mr and Mrs Lavery accepted wrongdoing including failing to file annual returns on time on three occasions, wrongly lending company money to connected parties, misusing funds and entering into transactions of no commercial benefit.

Jewell Developments went into administration owing £86,000,

Mr and Mrs Newell accepted misusing company funds by lending to connected parties, depriving the company of cash assets of £648,600, deals that did not benefit the company and failing to file records on time three times.

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