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Friday 2nd
posted by Richard Bagley in Britain

Workers and their families want those responsible 'held to account'

MULTIMILLIONAIRE City Link axeman Jon Moulton faced the prospect yesterday of a Commons grilling over the murky events that led to thousands of workers hearing of its demise on Christmas Day.

Labour MP Katy Clark vowed to press for an official hearing into the company’s collapse that would include the tax-hating Tory donor, said to have a fortune of £170 million, who heads City Link’s parent firm.

Ms Clark, a member of the influential Commons business select committee, said: “City Link workers and their families want questions answered and those responsible held to account.”

She said that questions remained over the “City Link scandal” which demanded a full investigation.

Among them is the accusation that parent firm Better Capital (BC) — founded by director Mr Moulton — decided to “cut and run” from City Link and stripped assets instead of trying to secure the firm’s future, the North Ayrshire and Arran MP said.

Guernsey-based BC is expected to be the main beneficiary from the decision to plunge City Link into insolvency.

It will be able to claw back up to £20m because it invested via secured loans rather than buying a stake in the firm, which it bought from previous owner Rentokil for just £1 in April 2013.

Transport union RMT attacked Business Secretary Vince Cable for refusing to assist an 11th-hour takeover.

The union said the gap between the failed bid and the administrators’ demand was just £3m — far less than the bill taxpayers now face for redundancy payments.

Instead over 2,300 workers were formally laid off on New Year’s Eve.

Hundreds more “owner drivers” and subcontractors are owed thousands but are expected to be left without a penny.

“The City Link Christmas destruction is an act of industrial vandalism that shames our nation while the government looked on and offered nothing but hollow words,” said RMT general secretary Mick Cash.

“The confirmation from the administrators that they have just sacked 2,400 staff and are pulling the plug on any efforts to save City Link is a disgraceful and cynical betrayal that will wreck the lives of our members, many of whom are owed thousands of pounds.”