A FORMER Tory councillor’s PPE firm is facing a winding-up order over £5.5 million in unpaid tax.

Steve Dechan – alongside his wife Kate – runs Platform-14 Medical Ltd (P-14), a firm that was awarded £276m in PPE contracts during the pandemic. However, only 274,200 of the 120 million masks ordered were sent to frontline NHS staff due to safety concerns.

The former Tory councillor in Stroud, Gloucestershire, stepped down following the controversy surrounding the awarding of PPE contracts, which were given without competitive tendering as the company was on a “VIP list” of preferred suppliers.

Dechan has previously said he had done “very, very well out of the pandemic” but denied he received any political patronage in the awarding of the contracts. 

The firm is now facing a winding-up order in unpaid corporation tax and national insurance from HMRC totalling £5.5m, according to The Sun – with the petition due to be heard next month.“very, very well out of the pandemic”

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In a statement to The Sun, Dechan said: “A new tax assessment was submitted to HMRC on June 30 showing a fraction of what was initially put. Most of the business has been sold. And we are all confident all or majority of any tax due will be paid.

"Tax liability in P-14 is less than £200k. That will be shown shortly. Our trading positions, acquisitions are private. Any tax due will be settled.”

Dechan has also previously defended the awarding of the contracts to his company, telling The Sunday Times that he has been “thrown to the wolves” by the government.

He has also said that since the negative coverage of the contracts, he had been abused and a brick had been thrown through his window.