The media firm responsible for handling income for former Bradford West MP George Galloway has gone into compulsory liquidation, owing more than £100,000 to HMRC.
Miranda Media was set up to handle income from Galloway's deals, including his role as a TV presenter for Iranian television channel Press TV.
Liquidators at accountancy firm Haslers found that the firm had no assets, with Nick Nicholson, the joint liquidator, reporting that as of last year the firm had no assets. “The handover papers included £100,284.76 owed to HM Revenue & Customs”, Nicholson added.
According to the liquidator's report, as of May 2015 Haslers has spent more than £25,000 on investigating Miranda Media’s finances – money which will be recouped before anything is paid to HMRC.
The final accounts filed by Miranda Media to June 2012 showed £9 in assets and losses of £82,000, and papers filed with Companies House show Galloway resigned as the company’s director in May 2013.
However Galloway told The Telegraph that the reports of £100,000 were “ridiculous” and that a figure of £40,000 was nearer the mark: “My lawyers and the lawyer for the liquidator are in negotiations.
The anti-EU campaigner and former Big Brother contestant went on to blame HMRC for forcing Miranda Media into liquidation by demanding instant payment following the revoking of Press TV’s UK license to broadcast.
“Press TV owed us £40,000”, said Galloway. “Immediately the [sic] HMRC came to the door and gave us 48 hours to pay.”
When it became clear that action would be taken against Miranda Media, on advice from ‘accountants and lawyers’ Galloway set up a second firm, Molucca Media, which he told The Telegraph is doing “rather well”, with assets of more than £150,000 according to its April 2015 accounts.