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Letting agent banned over Bounce Back Loan abuse

  • 03/01/2023
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Letting agent banned over Bounce Back Loan abuse
A London letting agent has been banned for 11 years after admitting abusing the Bounce Back Loan scheme.

Laszlo Szabo, 49, was the sole director of Letting Base Limited, and applied for a Bounce Back Loan worth £38,000 in October 2020.

However, he then applied for a further loan of £50,000 from a different bank, as well as a £12,000 top up to the initial Bounce Back Loan, taking the total acquired through the scheme to £100,000.

The Bounce Back Loan scheme was introduced during the pandemic in order to support businesses, with loans limited to up to 25 per cent of their 2019 turnover, up to a maximum of £50,000.

Szabo returned to the second bank, seeking a further £50,000 top up, which was turned down.

Letting Base went into liquidation in 2022, owing more than £243,000, including the £100,000 borrowed through the Bounce Back Loan scheme. This triggered the investigation by the Insolvency Service.

The investigation found that with each application Szabo signed a declaration stating that it was his only application, and that the business was entitled to the money being applied for.

Szabo did not dispute that he had misused the Bounce Back Loan scheme, and has now been banned for 11 years. The disqualification prevents him from being involved in the promotion, formation or management of a company without the permission of the court.

Nina Cassar, deputy head of investigations at the Insolvency Service, said: “Laszlo Szabo made false declarations to his company’s banks, and then entered liquidation having made no repayments towards its Bounce Back Loans, which resulted in a loss of £100,000 of public funds.

“His blatant and repeat abuse of taxpayer’s money has resulted in a lengthy disqualification, which will serve to safeguard the economy from traders who exploit financial support packages designed to help UK businesses.”

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