UB40 members declared bankrupt

By | Published on Tuesday 18 October 2011


Four of the five remaining original members of UB40 still in the band have been forced into bankruptcy following a legal battle over tax payments. A court order, due to last for a year, also means that HM Revenue & Customs can claim monies due to them by seizing the men’s property and any royalties they earn from the band’s music. The band members will also have to pay court fees which, the Telegraph says, also run into tens of thousands of pounds.

As previously reported, the band appeared at Birmingham High Court in February after an investigation into the affairs of their record label DEP International. In July a judge gave the go ahead for creditors to take royalty payments to cover outstanding debts, and last week declared Brian Travers, Jimmy Brown, Terence Oswald and Norman Hassan bankrupt. Robin Campbell, brother of former frontman Ali Campbell, was also listed on the court case but was not declared bankrupt.

As also previously reported, Ali Campbell left the group in 2008, citing fears over the group’s finances for his decision. Keyboard player Mickey Virtue also quit shortly afterwards, but the rest of the band continued on, a third Campbell brother, Duncan, taking over as frontman.

Asked about his former bandmates’ current woes, Ali told The Telegraph: “This is the very reason why I left the band. This was my biggest fear when I was with them, that bankruptcy was going to happen and no one can say I didn’t warn them. In the 1980s we were living in five-star hotels and we got through a lot of money. Why weren’t the other guys listening to me when I started to flag these money problems up? They decided to back the management and not me, I’m still very bitter about it. I was very proud of what I achieved with UB40. It was a band I started, I was with them for 28 years and we made 24 albums. But we were divided and ruled, and this is what happened in the end. UB40 have been asset-stripped by the people around them”.

Away from the courts, the band are apparently currently working on a new album.