Four members of the Birmingham band UB40 have been declared bankrupt, despite the group's monumental success that included record sales surpassing 70 million and 50 chart hits, reports the UK's Daily Telegraph.
A judge at the Birmingham County Court declared saxophonist Brian Travers, drummer Jimmy Brown, trumpeter Terence Oswald and percussionist Norman Hassan bankrupt, with their details now listed by the insolvency service. The court order, which lasts for a year, means tax officers can seize the individual's property in order to pay off outstanding debts. The bankruptcy comes after the failure of the group's management company Dep International, and follows a bitter bust up over band finances that eventually led to the group splitting. At a previous court hearing, Judge Richard Musgrave gave liquidators the go-ahead to chase royalty payments on the band's biggest hits, including Red Red Wine, which reached No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100. At the time, their solicitor Adrian Stickland said, "If bankruptcy proceedings are issued following this hearing today, the band will vigorously oppose them".
The rest of the group have kept tight lipped about the bankruptcy. They are understood to be recording a new album in Worcestershire. Incidentally, the group played a recent set at the Hare and Hounds pub in Birmingham, the scene of their first gig in 1978.