The company went into administration in September, after it was raided by Customs and Excise and all its documents were removed as part of an ongoing investigation.
Following the raid, Customs issued an assessment on Trapps claiming the alcohol warehouse owes £1.93m of unpaid excise.
And now, the government is threatening to remove Trapps’ ‘bonded status’- the position which enables it to store alcohol without paying excise on the goods until they leave the warehouse for consumption in the UK.
Richard Toone, the administrator, explained: ‘Customs is revoking bonded status because it believes there have been matters that are not accounted for.’
He explained the company had gone into administration mainly because it did not have enough money to pay the assessment demanded by Customs. He added that, when the government raided Trapps, confiscating all its documents and office equipment for the investigation, the company was left without the paperwork to continue trading.
Toone said that so far he had been unable to sell the business, despite contacting various potential buyers. And as part of his administration duties, Toone will also have to investigate Customs’ allegations about the unpaid excise.
‘The first thing we have to do,’ he said ‘is to get the wine back to its rightful owners. Then we will decide what to do about the company.’
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