Two connected companies that operated a charity bag collection scam have been wound up in the High Court after an Insolvency Service investigation.
Air Ambulance Recycling Limited and E&N Textiles, which operated across the UK but primarily in the west midlands, both solicited donations of unwanted clothing by dropping off collection bags, the Insolvency Service said.
Both companies, which shared a director who was not named by the Insolvency Service, made "misleading representations" that donated clothing would be sold and the proceeds would go to local air ambulance charities, the Insolvency Service said. But the investigation found no evidence that any donations had been made.
It also found that neither of the companies had made any attempt to obtain a licence to make collections, and were therefore in breach of the House to House Collections Act 1939.
The Insolvency Service said the companies had also attempted to pass themselves off as authorised collection agents by sending out bags with attached leaflets bearing logos similar to those of official air ambulance charities, but they had not been authorised by any air ambulance service to act as fundraisers at any time.
Alex Deane, the investigation supervisor, said: "In winding up these companies, the court has sent a clear message that it is unacceptable to mislead the public and exploit their goodwill towards emergency services. The Insolvency Service will seek to have such companies closed down."Last year, three companies that also posed as air ambulance clothing collectors were also wound up in the High Court.