On Thursday 16 February, at Basingstoke Magistrates Court, Steven Douglas of Triforce Security Solutions Ltd, was found guilty of supplying unlicensed security operatives.
Triforce Security Solutions Ltd are members of our Approved Contractors Scheme (ACS), which exists to raise performance standards in the private security industry.
The investigation into the company began after we received information that they had supplied unlicensed security operatives to work on some of their contracts for security services.
Douglas refuted the allegations, which had been put to him by the SIA, and provided a list of the employees that Triforce had supplied. However this list contained the details of two security operatives whose licences had expired.
Douglas also assured our investigators that neither of these operatives had been supplied to any contract after their licence had expired. This appeared to be confirmed by time sheets emailed to us by Triforce Security Solutions.
During the investigation, the customer requested that the timesheets be cross checked. Our investigators compared the time sheets and discovered that the guards whose licences had expired appeared on the documents sent to the SIA from the customer, but not those supplied by Triforce Security Solutions Ltd.
Our investigators then interviewed the security guards in question, who admitted to working without a licence for a considerable time. They also disclosed that Douglas was aware the guards were unlicensed as they themselves had informed him.
Following this, we interviewed Douglas under caution and in a statement admitted that he had constructed false records. He also stated that he had supplied these documents to the SIA in an attempt to cover up this fact.
In one instance a security guard was supplied on 110 occasions. In another case, a security guard was supplied on 62 occasions.
Douglas took full responsibility, absolving both his fellow director and his business and marketing manager who both stated that they had no knowledge of his actions. He pleaded guilty to a section 5 offence (via section 22) under the Private Security Industry Act (PSIA) 2001, for supplying unlicensed guards. He was fined £425, ordered to pay costs in the sum of £3,293.30 and given a victim surcharge of £43.
The company, Triforce Security Solutions Ltd, also pleaded guilty to a section 5 PSIA (2001) offence. They were fined £1000 ordered to pay costs of £3,293 and given a victim surcharge of £100.
In total, Douglas and Triforce Security Solutions Ltd have to pay £8,154. The ACS status of the company will also be reviewed.
Our Investigations Manager, Pete Easterbrook, said:
"This outcome highlights that where we identify criminal offences being committed within the security industry, the SIA has the will and capability to ensure that those responsible are prosecuted and face the consequences of their actions.
In addition to any punishment imposed by the court, likely consequences can include the revocation of SIA licences from individuals, and the removal of Approved Contractor Scheme status from businesses.
This particular offence was aggravated by the regulator being provided with false information and documents, something which will not be tolerated, and is very likely to see those responsible end up with a criminal conviction, as was the case here".
- 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 (Security Industry Authority) and Twitter (SIAuk).