Court hears Goldtrail liquidator’s claim against Wyatt and Onur AirPosted: February 19, 2014
By Ian Taylor,
Goldtrail Travel was insolvent a year before it went into administration at a cost of £25 million to the Air Travel Trust fund, a Court heard yesterday.
The company ceased trading in July 2010 in a failure that cost up to £33 million, but Goldtrail was £2.4 million in debt in October 2009 and had net liabilities of almost £3 million by March 2010.
The High Court in London saw the beginning yesterday of a claim for £1.4 million brought by Goldtrail liquidator PwC against Phil Wyatt, Halldor Sigurdarson, Magnus Stephensen and Black Pearl Investments (BPI) and a linked claim for £3.64 million against airline Onur Air.
The claim centres on allegations that the Black Pearl defendants gave “dishonest assistance” to Goldtrail’s sole director Abdulkadir Aydin “in a breach of his fiduciary duty”, and that all the defendants were involved in the “misapplication” and “misuse of payments”.
Aydin is believed to have transferred more than £10 million to himself and his family ahead of putting Goldtrail into administration.
Wyatt, Sigurdarson and Stephensen ran Viking Airlines which sold seats to Goldtrail.
All the defendants contest the claims.
Counsel for the liquidator insisted yesterday: “We are not asserting that any of the defendants knew Goldtrail was insolvent.” But she said: “Money that should have gone to Goldtrial went to Mr Aydin. . . In that, he was assisted by Onur and the BPI defendants.
“Deposits stated as deposits in flight agreements” were used to pay Aydin. “We say they were never intended to be genuine deposits.”
Responding to the claim, counsel for the BPI defendants said: “Mr Wyatt has been concerned and continues to be concerned by a degree of animus against him on the part of the Civil Aviation Authority.”
Referring to a commercial agreement between Goldtrail and the defendants on behalf of Viking, counsel for BPI described it as “window dressing”
Counsel for Onur Air insisted: “We were defrauded by Mr Aydin. The claim against us is the very amount we are out of pocket.”
Aydin was found guilty of “gross mismanagement” in the High court in May 2013 following a case brought by the Insolvency Service and disqualified from being a company director for the maximum term.
He is not expected to return to the UK from the Ukraine.
Sourced by Travel Weekly