The husband and wife owners of a modelling agency have been banned from running an employment business for at least 10 years following action by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (DBERR).
Dean and Debbie Coles were banned from running, or being concerned with the running, of an employment agency or business during a hearing at an employment tribunal in Bristol.
The application was made by DBERR’s Employment Agency Standards inspectorate after Mr Coles was released from prison on parole, having served part of an eight-year sentence following a conviction of rape, attempted rape and indecent assault.
The victims were female clients of Cotswold Models, the modelling agency run by the Coles.
The tribunal found that Mr Coles was “unsuitable” to be involved in the running of an agency due to the serious nature of the crimes he committed against his clients.
Section 3(A) of the Employment Agencies Act 1973 empowers an employment tribunal to ensure that unsuitable persons are not involved in the running of any employment agency.
Employment relations minister Pat McFadden said: “This action proves we are committed to protecting the rights and wellbeing of agency workers, who are often among the most vulnerable of employees.”
Last month, the government announced a doubling of the number of inspectors to make enforcement of the law even more effective.
New regulations will also ban the taking of fees at casting sessions and introduce a new cooling off period to prevent aspiring models being ripped off by casting agents.