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Revealed: Disgraced former BHS boss sent back to jail after being caught secretly running a restaurant chain with Marco Pierre White’s son


Disgraced former BHS boss Dominic Chappell was thrown back in jail after being caught secretly running a restaurant chain with the son of celebrity chef Marco Pierre White, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

Chappell, 56, who bought BHS from Sir Philip Green for £1 before it collapsed with the loss of 11,000 jobs, was released from prison last year after serving half his six-year sentence for tax fraud.

Despite being barred from running companies, the shamed entrepreneur teamed up with his close friend Marco Pierre White and his son Luciano Pierre White, 34, also a chef, to help launch three Italian restaurants – only for the chain to fold with huge debts.

Disgraced former BHS boss Dominic Chappell was thrown back in jail after being caught secretly running a restaurant chain with the son of celebrity chef Marco Pierre White

Disgraced former BHS boss Dominic Chappell was thrown back in jail after being caught secretly running a restaurant chain with the son of celebrity chef Marco Pierre White

Chappell ran it as a ‘consultant’ while out on parole, appointing associates as directors. 

Following a tip-off, he was recalled to HMP Guys Marsh in Dorset last month for breaking his licence conditions. 

An investigation by this newspaper has found that he brazenly defied the rules in a disastrous attempt to rebuild his career.

Sources said Dorset Police Fraud and Economic Crime Investigation Unit interviewed directors and staff about Chappell’s activities. 

Police say they are not investigating the restaurant chain itself.

One director, Jeremy Gower, said: ‘Dominic had complete control as the consultant on behalf of the holding company.’

During a showdown at one of the restaurants, Luciano’s in Dorchester, Dorset, Mr Gower recalled telling Chappell: ‘You are running amok… you are taking money out of the company, you don’t have a single successful business to your name… you’re reneging on all of your parole.’

Chappell teamed up with his close friend Marco Pierre White and his son Luciano Pierre White, 34, also a chef, to help launch three Italian restaurants

Chappell teamed up with his close friend Marco Pierre White and his son Luciano Pierre White, 34, also a chef, to help launch three Italian restaurants

Chappell was nicknamed ‘The Consultant’ by some staff as an ‘in-house joke’.

A source said: ‘He pulled all the strings. There was no one else.’

The former racing driver, who has been declared bankrupt three times, bought high street chain BHS from Sir Philip in March 2015. 

After he drained millions out of the company – he blew a fortune on personal luxuries such as a £200,000 racing yacht, a £1million speedboat, and a Bentley – it crashed in April 2016 leaving a pensions black hole of more than £500 million.

Sources say the Luciano’s restaurant business is now insolvent, owing at least £100,000 in rent and £30,000 in service charges. 

A source said Marco asked Chappell to buy the restaurants on behalf of Luciano and get them up and running. But the business soon hit trouble.

By the time Mr Gower joined the operating company’s board in February all the other directors had left. 

Of the three restaurants – in Dorchester, Woking and Exeter – the latter two closed last year.

Marco and Luciano Pierre White were contacted for comment.



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