Shrewsbury security boss ordered to pay £1800 and disqualified from being a director

25 March 2020

A Shrewsbury security boss, whose former business partner has already been jailed for supplying unlicensed security guards, has been served with a confiscation order and disqualification in relation to the same offence.   
Maria Francis, of Shrewsbury was ordered to pay £1800 within three months by Shrewsbury Crown Court on Monday 09 March. If Ms Francis fails to pay the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) confiscation order she could face a jail sentence. She was also forbidden to hold a directorship for the next two years, and now has a criminal record.  

This court order brings to an end a series of court appearances by Ms Francis following a successful prosecution we brought against her. In June 2018 Maria Francis pleaded guilty at Shrewsbury Crown Court ​to supplying unlicensed security guards, which is an offence under the Private Security Industry Act (PSIA). In July 2018 she was sentenced to a 12 month conditional discharge and the company was fined £2,700 and ordered to pay £500 in costs.  
Francis was the director of Showtime Security Guarding Ltd, a business she shared with her former partner, Matthew Davies, who was jailed for perverting the course of justice.  
Pete Easterbrook, one of our Criminal Investigation Managers, said:
“Maria Francis put the public at risk and profited from her criminality. 
The court has ordered her to pay £1800 which is the amount that she benefited from her unlawful activities. She must remember that if she refuses to pay the order she will be jailed, and the amount will still need to paid. She has also got a criminal record and will not be able to work in the private security industry again.  
The recent court proceedings bring to an end our prosecution of Showtime Security Guarding Ltd who sent unlicensed guards to “protect” vulnerable people. The business chose profit over keeping the public safe.”                          -ends-

Further information:
1. The Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (“POCA”) sets out the legislative scheme for the recovery of criminal assets with criminal confiscation being the most commonly used power. Confiscation occurs after a conviction has taken place.
2. If a person has a POCA Order against them they have to pay it regardless if they serve a jail sentence.