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Caring Careers Training Officially Closed Down

20 July 2011

Another major British NVQ training company bites the dust leaving hundred's of Filipinos out of pocket and with no qualification - investigators discover a link to Precision Training

The now deserted offices of Caring Careers Training in Bicester, Oxfordshire

The Oxfordshire based NVQ training college Caring Careers Training (CCT) run by Andrew Battman which ripped off many Pinoys, has been formally wound up after a report was submitted by investigators of the UK Companies House Insolvency Service.

The report also reveals that Caring Careers were linked to Precision Training which also left many Filipino students adrift.

(With additional link to original BBC report on CCT  and Balitang Europe's video report below, and comments)

The company and its officers duped hundreds of students, many of them Filipinos, into paying for non-existent training courses.

Convicted visa crook Andrew Battman (above) did not oppose the Companies House petition to wind up his companies

The petition was presented to Registrar Ms Barber at the High Court in London this morning in respect of CCT and an associated company Caring Careers Ltd (CCL).  

The main grounds for the winding up petition were that CCT had failed to provide adequate training, failing to keep and maintain adequate records, abandonment of the company and of insolvency.

In the petitions and affidavit which Balita Pinoy has seen, only 301 of all students were registered with training provider City & Guilds. It is unknown how many paid CCT/CCL. What did also emerge from the extensive investigations was that only 15 of all the students ever received an NVQ; these were all UK residents and that these had their courses paid for by a government funded body, the Learning Skills Council (LSC).

The records of student numbers are in the main missing, what have been analysed show that at the peak of trading activity there were 100 UK based students whose fees were paid by the LSC, 120 international (mostly Filipino) students in the UK with a further 250 students in the Philippines who had paid fees but were waiting to enter the UK.

The bank accounts examined by the investigating team showed an income of £1.6-M. However, all student records were missing with no adequate explanation for their absence being provided. There is also evidence that money sent from the Philippines for students advance payments never went into the company bank accounts. Battman could not account for the vanishing sums to the investigators.

This would appear to give a clear indication of either fraud or money laundering or both.

In respect to the records of the company, these have all in the main vanished. Explanations given by Battman to the investigators did not hold up when checked out. The only ones that remain were those relating to staff salaries which were held by the company's accountants.

He claimed records were transferred to a house which he abandoned. However, the investigators discovered the company which cleared the house of its contents on behalf of the landlords who evicted Battman confirmed that all the contents of the house were limited to personal effects and tinned food. They unequivocally stated that nothing looking like company records or files were on the premises.

Battman did however confirm that no students had been paid refunds.

Battman also claimed to investigators that he was only ever paid a salary of £450 per month, with the rent of his house being paid by CCT/CCL (£550 per month). This would place him as earning less than the British minimum wage. In actual fact, according to evidence obtained by the investigators, Battman appeared to have been using company funds as a "piggy-bank". 

Battman had attempted to blame everyone else in his company as being responsible for its collapse.

There was one business disaster he could not try to blame on anyone else, and pleaded guilty to it in Oxfordshire's Banbury magistrates court in February of 2010. This was a visa fraud charge brought by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) relating to a complaint brought by a Filipina that Battman had taken money off her to arrange a visa. The charge was under section 91 of the British Immigration Act, and Battman was fined £580, ordered to pay compensation of £1,250 to the complainant, and ordered to pay costs of £622 to towards the prosecution.

The OISC generally only bring charges when a non-registered person is offering visa advice and services and is not registered with them (a legal requirement) or a qualified lawyer. This charge did not even belong to CCT, but to yet another company associated with Andrew Battman, CBC Support Service Ltd. Investigations by Balita Pinoy showed that this specific company was indeed registered as a visa/immigration advisor with the OISC, but surrendered this registration in 2006. After this time, it was illegal for it to offer advice or services in anything to do with immigration. Further investigations showed that in fact there was no such company registered at Companies House and that the whole enterprise was a sham.

According to what was discovered, virtually all of the non-European Union students were Filipino. Although there were apparently plans to include students from Nepal and India in the structure, these were never proceeded with.

What is certainly clear from the investigations undertaken is that there is no evidence of money available to repay the duped students. All the money has either been spent or salted away. 

The petitions into the winding up both state that it is in the public interest to do so, and also that it will now permit investigations to begin into the business practices that went on in Battman's companies.

One of the important revelations that came out of the Companies House investigator's report was the linkage to Precision Training.

It transpired that Caring Careers Ltd had been set up in November 2006 and had been placing its students with third party training providers, including Precision Training.

However, because of problems with Precision, including complaints from students of no correct training being provided by Precision, Battman set up Caring Careers Training in August 2008 to undertake in-house training and withdrew all students from Precision Training.

The link below is to the BBC investigative program "You & Yours" in which reporter Melanie Abbott delved into the affairs of Caring Careers Training last year. The report starts at 39 minutes into the program, so just move the cursor at the top over when the sound clip plays:

YouTube Video Clip below from Rose Eclarinal's Balitang Europe report last year - the quality is not good but Pinoys will understand it 

Below are comments from previous stories on the Caring Careers Scandal, if you wish to add your comment to these comments or this story, the comment box is at the bottom of this page

Paul Suzon said...

Please help us , we ask for justice...

Posted 28 August 2010 14:50 |

EC LC said...

Please we need to get our money back. Mr. Battman, if the Lord can forgive, why can't we, just return the money of our parents, they worked hard for that. To the UKBA, we hope you help us with this also. And to ABS CBN, you have a responsibility to help us because without you, CCT won't be affecting as much students as they had.Mr. Danny Buenafe, remember your report last June 2009.

Posted 30 August 2010 21:26 |

steve said...

I have recently become aware of this issue and as a tutor and assessor now working with students in the north of england who have been subject to this deception and theft. I am appalled and deeply embarrassed (as an english person)by the treatment of these students. I have come to know these students and can honestly say in my 23 years of working in the care sector, they are without question some of the best carers I have had the pleasure to meet. I intend to press this issue as far as possible, there needs to be real momentum and this issue needs to be raised within the public domain.

Posted 7 October 2010 18:22 |

cathy said...

I am one of the destitute students of ccl. I am asking any help from british entity especially the UKBA to foresee this case. I just wanted to get back the money I have paid for nothing. Mr. Battman, dont u have a conscience? Because of u, lots of us have landfilled of debts... I am asking for any help.

Posted 14 October 2010 00:57 |

Ana Liza Aguila said...

hi, I am also an applicant of CCT pero sa baguio kami nakapag apply. Isa din kami sa mga naloko, at marami kaming taga Luzon na biktima ni Andrew at Ed Mariano. Kasama na po ba ang buong CCT students as complait na ito especially Baguio and Manila students. we have paid 2000 pounds sa kanila. I hope i get a reply. thanks!

Posted 7 April 2011 19:10 |

bing_osol said...

dear sir /maam, i am roberto osol from philippines one the victim of caring careers training(headed by andrew battman) would like to ask from your office if you have knowledge about cct?just a moment i read news about the firm.i hope you response in my email.thank you!

Posted 12 January 2011 00:31 |

peter wattt said...

mr osol why do you have to spend thousand of pounds in order to study in uk.if ever you finish the course do you think you can use the certificate earned when you apply a job in your country.your stupid.

Posted 9 May 2011 15:21 |

bert delecerna said...

if you think you are well off person try to think to the third world countries even doctors aiming to be like this.just to look for greener pasture.your very thankful that you are not living in the philippines.thanks for the comment.

Posted 9 June 2011 06:29 |

bert delecerna 

mr peter,if you think you are well off person try to think to the third world countries even doctors aiming to be like this.just to look for greener pasture.your very thankful that you are not living in the have no right to say that,your stupid too.

Posted 9 June 2011 06:35 |

sarah smith said...

as far as I am concerned all of you seem to bring it on yourselves. I warned all our girls on placements with this company and all they did was sit passively even though they had not had any tution for a year.Everyone in that company were in on the act it seems and all the filipinios were here to work and not to study. All this crying without stereotyping it seems that the filipion community is easily expoilted and not willing to confront any situation. One girl even asked Andrew if he was a conman! This will definetley happen again and its all the students fault. Learn how to fight and do what is right and learn INTEGRITY stop working 90 hrs a week and realise that you have to be self determined and abide in the law of the land. This is the U.K stop being passive.

Posted 21 September 2010 12:09 |

Nadia Salim replied to sarah smith...

At LAST someone who is speaking sense. This company fufiled its part of the bargain to bring you to the UK and all of you were quite content not to have any tuition!!!! It was just a conspiracy of silence now visas are running out every one is panicking. Its time to come clean. How can any one pay thousands without something to SHOW for it?? It just does not make sense.I know some students who use these colleges to get into the country to work and then cry when they get caught. Please realise that this company knew that you were not interested in studying. UKBA please take note. Where I work students were told to report the company and write letters to ask about where the assessors were. ALL THE STUDENTS WITHOUT EXCEPTION did NOTHING. THAT WAS OVER 18 MTHS AGO!!The evidence speaks for itself.

Posted 21 September 2010 12:22 |

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Anonymous said...

Okay, for one thing, the researchers need to do their job better. CCL/CCT NEVER had any links with Precision. It was with HHSC Training and Consultancy, a firm that Lesley O'Connor previously worked for. Lesley also did to them what she did to CCT. She stole money from them. There is evidence to prove this fact from both HHSC and CCT. CCT have recently just won a court case in which Lesley O'Connor is to return almost �17,000 for theft/fraud. Once this has been settled, she is being taken to court once again for deception through deceit where she will be owing over �250,000. Adrian Park did go to see CCT in May 2009, but it was CCT who refused to work with him as he had training groups such as Precision under his wing. CCT felt it could not work with these unscrupulous people. Students were being seen by assessors regularly, but it was the students who came up with excuses not to see their assessors when the time came. They were trying to save money by saying "We didn't see the assessor, so we aren't paying any money". After this, Jay and Jen Mariano tried to get all our students to go to Jivaro as Mr. Park had offered them twice as much money as CCT was offering them per student. Greed. What Sarah Smith says is true. The students that CCT brought to the UK WHO THEY WERE GENUINELY GOING TO TRAIN, were not interested in the training what-so-ever and were regularly working illegal hours (90+) a week. Look at the students who refused to pay for their training first before you automatically blame the company. How is the company supposed to keep running when the people they are trying to help don't keep their end of the bargain?

Posted 26 July 2011 03:05 | Reply to this comment

Balita Pinoy Editorial replied to Anonymous...

"Anonymous" should really check with Mr Battman before sounding off. The following are quotes from the affidavit supplied by the Investigation Branch of the Insolvency Service of Companies House in its application to have the companies struck off in the High Court. These are quotes of an interview with Mr Battman under caution> Para 156: CCL was set up as a recruitment company for overseas students coming to train in the UK, with Precision Training Limited and others whose names Mr Battman could not recall. Precision Training Limited was wound up in the public interest following an investigation by Company Investigations, on 19 May 2010. Para 157: Feedback by students in the UK indicated that the training companies whom CCL acted for were not providing training. Mr Battman decided to set up CCT to look after the students, to provide training directly to those students. Para 177: According to Mr Battman, CCL transferred over all its business to CCT. CCT ceased to trade after problems with its Tier 4 accreditation caused problems with its ability to recruit new students. CCT suffered cash flow problems and simply could not afford to carry on. Para 183: According to Mr Battman, over 200 applicant students had been recruited in the Philippines by sub-contracted offices, and those students had paid advance fees of £2,000 each via bank transfers to CCT, with all those students awaiting to enter the UK by the time the company [CCT] ceased trading. Para 190: Mr Battman claimed that CCT had received few serious complaints from students in the UK. As to those applicants who had paid advance fees and received nothing in return, Mr Battman claimed most of those had been signed up to competing education providers, failing to provide an explanation as to what action those applicants had taken to recover their monies. No applicants had been refunded. If as is stated CCT, who are now liquidated, received £17,000, and are hoping to receive £250,000, this money will be provided to the Official Receiver to pay off CCL/CCT's many creditors

Posted 28 July 2011 05:11 | Reply to this comment

Anlo said...

I think the bottom line here is there was a fraud full stop.

Posted 17 August 2011 03:26 | Reply to this comment

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