Maxwell bankruptcy trustee appointed

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The Independent Online
(First Edition)

THE FIRST steps to find and seize assets belonging to Kevin Maxwell began yesterday with the official appointment of a trustee in bankruptcy.

Peter DuBuisson, insolvency partner at BDO Binder Hamlyn, the accountants, was formally appointed to take control of the affairs of Mr Maxwell by Michael Heseltine, President of the Board of Trade. Mr Maxwell became Britain's biggest bankrupt on Thursday. Mr DuBuisson plans to call a creditors' meeting later this month to approve the appointment of a second trustee, his colleague, Phillip Sykes. He will also be consulting creditors about the setting up of a committee of creditors to help with his investigation.

Although Mr DuBuisson has already begun assembling a team at Binder Hamlyn to help him, he is anxious to keep costs to a minimum. The inquiry is expected to take in Liechtenstein and the United States as well as Britain.

Once assets are traced and seized, the trustees' duty is to pay sums to creditors, the largest of which so far is Bishopsgate Investment Management. 'The ultimate beneficiaries are going to be the creditors,' Mr DuBuisson said.

The pounds 406.5m bankruptcy petition was filed against Mr Maxwell by Robson Rhodes, the accountancy firm that is the liquidator of Bishopsgate. The firm had previously obtained judgment against Mr Maxwell for alleged breaches of duty as a Bishopsgate director.

Mr DuBuisson said he would talk to Mr Maxwell soon and also would 'tap into' information gathered by others investigating Robert Maxwell's business empire since his death last November.