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Usdaw welcomes the continuing investigation by the Pension Regulator into the BHS scandal

Date: 22 August 2017 Shopworkers’ trade union Usdaw welcomed the Pension Regulator’s continuing investigation of the BHS pension scandal, after today announcing their intention to prosecute former BHS owner Dominic Chappell for failing to provide information.
Mr Chappell has been summonsed to appear at Brighton Magistrates' Court on 20 September  2017 to face three charges of neglecting or refusing to provide information and documents without a reasonable excuse.

In June the Pension Regulator published its report into the sale of BHS, which stated: "We argued that the main purpose of the sale was to postpone BHS' insolvency to prevent a liability to the schemes falling due while it was part of the Taveta group of companies ultimately owned by the Green family."

Concerns about the future of the pension scheme grew when the company collapsed last year, with the loss of over 11,000 jobs and affecting around 19,000 pension scheme members. Sir Philip owned BHS for 15 years before selling it for £1 to former bankrupt Dominic Chappell in 2015. In February Sir Phillip agreed to pay £363 million in an attempt to rescue the pension scheme.

Dave Gill - Usdaw National Officer says: “It is frankly quite shocking that Mr Chappell has apparently not made the requested information available. We would expect all involved in the BHS scandal to co-operate fully with all investigations.

“The knock on effect of the actions of Sir Philip and Mr Chappell have had a huge impact on the hard working and loyal employees who lost their jobs and now most of the pension scheme members will not receive the retirement income they were promised.

“Whilst the Pension Regulator has been successful in striking a deal with Sir Philip Green, the fact remains that the full buy out cost to secure 100% of members’ benefits has not been met. There is still a lot of uncertainty for members and hopefully this will be addressed over the coming months when they receive more information about their options.

“It is important that the Regulator continues to review and improve its processes to prevent this situation arising again, however, this will be of little comfort to the thousands of BHS workers who have lost their livelihoods and are facing a reduction to their income in their retirement.”

Notes for editors:

Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fourth biggest trade union with over 430,000 members. Membership has increased by more than 20% in the decade. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the Union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.

For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/new... and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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