Jury Finds Ilhan Kekec the Director of the Derwish Kebab Restaurant in Forest Gate, London Guilty of Blagging a Bounce Back Loan By Over-Egging His Company Turnover and Dissolving His Company – He Gets a 2 Year 6 Month Prison Sentence

Restaurant owner jailed for abusing Covid loan then dissolving his company

close a limited company

Businessman fraudulently applied for a Covid Bounce Back Loan and broke company law when applying to have his business struck off

Ilhan Kekec fraudulently secured a £30,000 Covid Bounce Back Loan just months into the pandemic

Within weeks, he had applied to dissolve his business without informing creditors

He has been jailed for two-and-a-half years and banned as a company director for three years

The owner of a Turkish restaurant who illegally applied for a Covid Bounce Back Loan and then applied to dissolve his company without informing creditors has been jailed.

Ilhan Kekec was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison when he appeared at Isleworth Crown Court for sentencing on Monday 18 March.

He was also disqualified as a company director for three years.

Kekec had denied charges of fraud by false representation and failing to notify creditors of a voluntary strike-off but was found guilty by a jury in December 2023.

Julie Barnes, Chief Investigator at the Insolvency Service, said:

  • “Ilhan Kekec saw an opportunity in the early weeks of the pandemic to receive a Covid loan which he never intended to repay.
  • His actions were thoroughly dishonest and at no point did he ever own up to his crimes.
  • He will now have the chance to reflect on his behaviour from behind bars.”

Kekec, of Abbotts Drive, Waltham Abbey, Essex, applied for a £30,000 Bounce Back Loan in May 2020, falsely claiming the turnover of this Hizirali Ltd business was £125,000.

Hizirali was set up by Kekec to run the Derwish Kebab Restaurant inside the food court of the East Shopping Centre on Green Street, Forest Gate, London.

Kekec had traded for three years through Helosh Ltd as the Derwish Restaurant on St Albans Road, Watford, before opening this second restaurant.

However, his new venture only traded for three weeks before the Covid lockdown, and he was unable to open during that period.

Kekec withdrew the Bounce Back Loan money in cash and later admitted to Insolvency Service investigators that he spent the funds on clearing personal debts.

He applied to dissolve his company in June 2020, claiming it was no longer economically viable for him to run the restaurant.

However, he deliberately failed in his statutory duty to inform his creditors within seven days of his voluntary strike-off application with Companies House.

Kekec was sentenced to two-and-a-half years each for two counts of fraud by false representation, and two years and four months respectively for offences under the Companies Act, with the sentences to run concurrently.

He is now subject to confiscation proceedings which have been scheduled for this year.

Further information

  • Ilhan Kekec is of Abbotts Drive, Waltham Abbey, Essex.
  • His date of birth is 30 March 1988
  • Sentenced for: Two counts of fraud by false representation, contrary to section 2 of the Fraud Act 2006 and two counts of failure of notification of a voluntary strike-off application to creditors, within the seven-day statutory period contrary to section 1006(1) of the Companies Act 2006
  • Hizirali Ltd (company number 12288297)
  • Helosh Ltd (company number 10988012)