Companies House says nothing has been found so far to suggest that a fault in its systems led to Vertu Motors’ public record being tampered with by ‘a malicious actor’.
Earlier this week, Car Dealer broke the news that Vertu was getting a court injunction after it discovered that its details had been falsely changed to say that several directors had quit and others appointed.
Among the alleged new appointees was a Mr Ice Crystal Augustus, 35, of West Drayton.
The address given for him actually exists, with Google Street View showing it to be a modest detached house.
Companies House told Car Dealer it was working with Vertu to get to the bottom of things, warning that anyone who deliberately filed false information could be fined or jailed for up to two years – or receive both punishments.
It then sent us an updated statement that said: ‘Our preliminary findings have identified no issues with Companies House systems in relation to this matter and we will continue to work with the company to resolve it.
‘We will continue to investigate and take appropriate action if there is evidence that an offence has been committed.’
It added: ‘The new Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act, which achieved Royal Assent last week, will significantly enhance the role and powers of the Registrar of Companies.
‘The Act will enable us to query, reject and, in some cases, remove information that seems incorrect or inconsistent with information already on the register.’
However, as of this morning, Vertu’s listing on Companies House was STILL showing the false details, including Ice Crystal Augustus as a director.
A big clue that things aren’t as they seem is the misspelling of ‘corporate’ in Ice Crystal Augustus’s given occupation, as seen in our main image, taken from the Companies House listing for Vertu.
Vertu says its board of directors is unchanged and as listed on its website. They are:
- Robert Forrester (CEO)
- Karen Anderson (CFO)
- David Crane (COO)
- Ken Lever (audit committee chairman)
- Pauline Best (remuneration committee chairman)
- Andrew Goss (nominations committee chairman)
- John Mewett
Vertu said it was working with Companies House to find out how the person was able to access its systems to make the alterations, adding that it was also liaising with Companies House to have the tampering corrected.
It also said that it was seeking a court injunction to stop any more changes being made.