Restaurateur brothers banned for failing to pay £173,000 in taxes

04 January 2021 by

Two brothers who ran Santo restaurant on London's Portobello Road have been disqualified for a total of 12 years after suppressing their takings to avoid paying tax.

Carlos Enrique De La Cruz Vidal and Fernando De La Cruz Vidal have been banned from acting as directors or directly or indirectly becoming involved, without the permission of the court, in the promotion, formation or management of a company.

Carlos' six-year ban became effective on 5 November, while Fernando's six-year ban is effective from 30 December.

The restaurant fell into creditors voluntary liquidation in December 2018 and the tax authorities found that, from September 2014 to September 2017, the brothers had suppressed the company's takings by more than £173,000 and overstated the amount of takings that were non-taxable.

In their undertakings, the brothers did not dispute that they caused inaccurate tax returns to be submitted to the tax authorities by supressing their sales income.

Lawrence Zussman, deputy head of insolvent investigations at the Insolvency Service, said: "Customers have a right to expect that the tax they pay on their food is given to the tax authorities. Instead, Carlos and Fernando De La Cruz Vidal substantially underdeclared the tax due and in doing so both failed to take their responsibilities as directors seriously.

"Carlos and Fernando have now been removed from the business environment for six years and these bans should further serve as a warning to other directors that if you do not pay the correct taxes you run the serious risk of being disqualified."

Photo: Shutterstock

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