Chesterfield businessman accused of making millions of pounds by 'asset stripping' clubs
A Chesterfield-based businessman has been accused of making millions of pounds by 'asset stripping' debt-laden sports and social clubs which used his services.
The BBC's Panorama programme said Glyn Jones offered debt management and restructuring services to as many as 50 clubs in financial difficulty via his Minotaur group of companies.
Complaints made by the 33 clubs spoken to by the BBC range from fees not being explained to representatives being rushed into signing complex paperwork to allow assets to be transferred to Minotaur Clubs Partnership.
Mr Jones denies any wrongoing.
'Very elderly trustees were taken advantage of'
Barrow Hill social club, which served residents for almost a century, shut last year.
Panorama said the club 'lost out big time' after the former trustees accepted help from Minotaur.
During the programme, reporter Jon Cuthill said: "In 2012, Barrow Hill was asset rich but cash poor - the exact profile that Minotaur and Glyn Jones seemed to like. It owned the hall outright, the house next door and an adjoining plot of land. But with not much in the bank the trustees borrowed Â£25,000 from Minotaur and let them oversee the sale of the house and land.
"Together, they sold for Â£180,000. The trustees were stunned to receive just Â£28,000 after the loan and Minotaur's fees, charges and expenses were deducted.
"And who had Glyn Jones sold the house to? It turns out Glyn Jones sold it to himself. It's now his head office.
"As for the land, he bought that too. He's building four houses on it, up for sale at Â£165,000 each."
Simon Redding, a new trustee of Barow Hill Community Trust, told Panorama: "There were some very elderly trustees who, I think, were taken advantage of. They had substantial assets that were basically eroded away."
Mr Jones stated that the trustees were 'well aware of the fees and charges', the sale of the house and land was carried out 'in accordance with Minotaur's stuatutory duties' and 'any allegation of dishonesty is entirely and robustly refuted'.
He added in a statement: "To the very last one, all trustees, committee members and decision makers in each club were provided with documentation in advance of signing and advised to take independent legal advice.
"The business that Minotaur Clubs Partnership was engaged in was of high risk, providing funding to badly managed and insolvent clubs.
"The partnership sourced funding from outside investors who knew the risks but expected returns accordingly.
"All the clubs which are mentioned were delighted when they received the monies arranged by the partnership."
Mr Redding said that he and his fellow trustees are now working to breath new life into the run down former Barrow Hill social club building - the one thing they still own.
Meanwhile, Mr Jones is now folding Minataur Clubs Partnership and some of its associated companies, making it even harder for clubs which have lost out to get justice, according to Panorama.