THE director of a pizza restaurant franchise in Bromsgrove has been disqualified for making payments of at least £205,000 to a company he had a personal interest in.

Balwinder Singh, 58, was the sole registered director of Charnwood Foods Ltd (CFL), which traded as Papa John’s Pizza on Birmingham Road from March 2014 to March 2015.

His firm went into liquidation on August 26, 2015, with no assets, owing an estimated £358,816 to creditors, of which £308,233 was owed to a bank due to loans.

But an investigation by the Insolvency Service found that Singh paid at least £205,000 to a third party he had a personal interest in.

When quizzed, he failed to deliver up adequate accounting records to show that such payments were reasonable, showing a “disregard for creditors”.

Insolvency Service investigations leader Aldona O’Hara said: “In investigating insolvent companies, the Insolvency Service always looks very closely at individuals who demonstrate a disregard for creditors and appropriate action is taken where wrongdoing is uncovered.

“Directors have a duty to ensure that their companies maintain proper accounting records, and, following insolvency, deliver them to the office-holder in the interests of fairness and transparency.

“Without a full account of transactions it is impossible to determine whether a director has discharged his duties properly, or is using a lack of documentation as a cloak for impropriety.

“This disqualification will prevent a repeat occurrence of this and act as a deterrent to any other directors who are thinking of putting their own interests before that of their company’s creditors.”

CFL received bank loans of £169,000 and £164,000 on March 27, 2014, and July 17, 2014, respectively.

On June 23 that year, he entered into a partnership with a third party, making three cheque payments totalling £125,000 from CFL's bank account to theirs between July and August.

Additional payments totalling £80,000 were made between June 2014 and March 2015.

He placed CFL into Creditors Voluntary Liquidation on August 26, 2015, and failed to disclose to the liquidators he made payments totalling at least £205,000 to the partnership.

He gave a disqualification undertaking to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on July 5, 2017, and has been slapped with a seven-year ban.

He cannot manage or control a company until July 30, 2024.