Unlicensed security director imprisoned and disqualified

14 May 2015

Yesterday [13 May] at Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court, a former security director was sentenced to a 16 week custodial sentence, ordered to pay £10,000 in costs, and was disqualified from being a company director for five years.

Wayne Tunstall (33) of Field Lane, Crewe, Cheshire, was found guilty of four offences under the Private Security Industry Act 2001; using unlicensed security operatives, engaging in licensable conduct without a licence, working as an unlicensed security director, and failing to provide information to the Security Industry Authority.

Tunstall had been the shadow director of WNT Security Ltd, of Crewe in Cheshire. The company had provided unlicensed security operatives between October 2013 and February 2014 on a security guarding contract to industrial premises in Warrington. Tunstall also undertook security guarding duties, despite not holding an SIA licence. Tunstall’s SIA licence was revoked in April 2011 on the grounds of criminality.

Tunstall continued to work as a company director, but in an attempt to avoid prosecution he installed a colleague, Kristian Saunders, as company director of WNT Security Ltd. Tunstall also failed to provide information to the SIA regarding the staff used on WNT contracts.

Kristian Saunders, of The Circle, Crewe, Cheshire, pleaded guilty on 1 December 2014 to two offences under the Private Security Industry Act 2001. Saunders was fined £500 and ordered to pay £1,250 in costs.

Tunstall was summonsed to attend Manchester Magistrates Court in July 2014, although missed a number of subsequent hearings. On 19 January 2015 Tunstall was found guilty in his absence and finally sentenced on 13 May 2015.

In sentencing Tunstall District Judge Saunders said:“It is quite clear that these were deliberate acts on your part, quite clear you chose to commit these offences and deliberately concealed your position to carry on trading.”

SIA Investigations Manager, Nathan Salmon said:

“Wayne Tunstall deliberately concealed he was not licensed to work in the private security industry, and, by installing Kristian Saunders as WNT company director, he continued to supply security services acting with a total disregard for the law.
“Using individuals to front businesses will not protect from prosecution; the Private Security Industry Act specifically interprets shadow directors and the SIA will assess personal liability, meaning those guilty of offences cannot hide behind others.
“This strong conviction highlights that security regulation exists in order to protect those who use contracted security services and the general public, and ensure, the effectiveness of security businesses that operate within the industry.”

Further information:

  • The Security Industry Authority is the organisation responsible for regulating the private security industry in the United Kingdom, reporting to the Home Secretary under the terms of the Private Security Industry Act 2001. The SIA's main duties are: the compulsory licensing of individuals undertaking designated activities; and managing the voluntary Approved Contractor Scheme.
  • For further information about the Security Industry Authority or to sign up for email updates visit www.sia.homeoffice.gov.uk. The SIA is also on Facebook- this link opens in a new window (Security Industry Authority) and Twitter- this link opens in a new window (SIAuk).