Documents have been uncovered which show in vivid detail the decision making process at Scottish Power which enabled it to avoid paying out to customers who were owed cash back on warranties they had bought on white goods in the late 1990s and early 2000s – the scheme was called PowerPlan.
Scottish Power's extended warranty and cashback scheme promised buyers that if they didn't make a claim they would get their money back in full after five years. PowerPlan went into administration around 10 years ago and 625,000 consumers - including more than 1,100 in Halton - lost £79 million.
625,000 people purchased the warranties and are still owed an average claim of £141 under a Scottish Power cash back guarantee. Collectively they are owed over £79 million plus interest.
Minutes and official correspondence that were recently uncovered by The MacDonald Partnership, aka TMP (liquidators of the scheme), point to an evasive culture where the profit margins of Scottish Power came before the needs of its customers.
Official reports compiled by TMP and KSA Group (another liquidator) are now in the hands of regulatory bodies such as the OFT, Serious Fraud Office, National Crime Agency and Isle of Man Pension Authority.
Many of the individuals identified in the newly available documents remain in positions of responsibility at Scottish Power. Others have moved on to the higher echelons of the financial establishment. This is not simply a scandal that occurred 10 years ago – it involves key people who are in positions of real influence today.
Mr Twigg is joining a cross party group of MPs in forming a All Party Parliamentary Group to examine the scandal. He will also be working closely with Parliamentary colleagues to ensure that Vince Cable, the Business Secretary, uses executive powers to open a public Inquiry by the Insolvency Service into the matter.