London, Oct 13 (PTI) An Indian-origin director of an employment agency providing temporary staff to companies in the West Midlands region of England has been banned for seven years for failing to adhere to the UK’s licencing standards.

Sukhjit Sohal Singh, who was director of Phoenix Midlands Ltd, was disqualified by the UK’s Insolvency Service.

He signed a Disqualification Undertaking, which bans him from acting as a company director or from managing or in any way controlling a limited company from September 5 2017 until September 4 2024, the Insolvency Service said.

“When directors of a company do not comply with legislation that is designed to protect employees, and avoidable losses result, the Insolvency Service will fully investigate the circumstances and take action where appropriate.”

“These disqualifications send a clear message that exploitation of vulnerable workers will not be tolerated,” said Aldona O’Hara, Chief Investigator of Insolvent Investigations Midlands & West at the Insolvency Service.

Singh was a director of Phoenix Midlands Limited, an employment agency that went into Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation on November 13, 2015 owing 841,566 pounds to creditors.

Between June 13, 2013 and at least February 5, 2015, Singh failed to ensure that Phoenix Midlands Limited complied with Licensing Standards set out by the Gangmasters Licensing Authority (GLA), the region’s regulatory body.

In particular, he was deemed “not fit and proper” to hold a GLA licence, as he not been candid and truthful in all dealings with them.

In addition, he had not demonstrated a readiness and willingness to comply with the requirements and standards of the regulatory system and with other legal, regulatory and professional requirements and standards.

The GLA licence was therefore revoked.

Among the offences committed by Singh, included not registering the company with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for income tax and National Insurance purposes.

He is now subject to a Disqualification Undertaking, which is the administrative equivalent of a disqualification order in the UK but do not involve court proceedings.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.