Founder and CEO of Salford College in Australia, Ash Goyal, was facing serious criminal charges of attempting to dishonestly obtain nearly $80,000 in Australian government marketing grants to promote his business overseas. The charges carried a potential 10 year jail term.
Authorities recently dropped the charges and Mr Goyal says he has been “vindicated”.
“I strongly denied these charges and feel vindicated that the case has subsequently been dismissed,” he said.
He went on to thank those who have supported him, including education agents:
I am extremely grateful to the students and staff of Salford College, as well as the education agents who refer students to us all over the world, who have stood by me through what has been a very testing time.
Salford College provides vocational training and has campuses in Sydney and Adelaide.
While the prospect of criminal prosecution may now be behind him, Mr Goyal still faces some other business challenges.
In January 2019 the Australian Skills Quality Authority cancelled Salford College’s registration after an audit found it had breached registered training organisation standards.
The college appealed the decision and the Administrative Appeals Tribunal issued an unconditional stay on the cancellation order pending the outcome of the appeal. Mr Goyal is confident that the appeal will be successful and stressed that in the meantime it is business as usual at Salford College:
The college continues to trade as normal with no conditions and we are confident that we will pass the audit process.
Finally and separately Mr Goyal is also fighting an attempt by a former Salford College director to wind up the company based on allegations that Mr Goyal and his wife misappropriated more that one million dollars. Again, Mr Goyal is optimistic:
I am confident that the matter between the college and a former director will also be resolved in the very near future.