Unlicensed Brighton security guard pleads guilty to working illegally

15 September 2020

A Brighton man pleaded guilty to working as an unlicensed security guard at Brighton Magistrates’ Court on Friday 11 September. 
Mohammed Ali, 43, worked illegally at the Cheeky Chicken in West Street during the height of Brighton’s summer holiday season. The court gave Ali an unconditional discharge and ordered him to pay £200.
Ali was discovered without a licence during our routine licence checks with West Sussex Police on 10 August 2019. Working while unlicensed is an offence under the Private Security Industry Act 2001, and as a result we prosecuted him.
The court heard that Ali, who is unemployed, had amassed significant credit card debt. The magistrates considered these circumstances alongside his guilty plea, previous good character, plus a show of remorse before awarding him an unconditional discharge. 
Ali formerly had an SIA Security Guard licence that expired on 22 June 2019. We wrote to Ali in June 2019 advising that his licence was expiring and that he should not accept offers of work in the private security industry. 
He had applied to renew his licence in May 2019. After his old licence had expired he still continued to provide unlicensed security services to the owners and management of the Cheeky Chicken and its patrons. 
Nathan Salmon, one of our criminal investigation managers, said that Ali’s actions displayed a contempt for the SIA licensing regime.
“The licensing regime is there to protect the public. This is particularly important during the height of the holiday season and a popular resort like Brighton. By being unlicensed Ali put the public at risk and he was investigated and prosecuted. The sentence on Friday means that Ali now has a criminal record and it is unlikely that he will be able to work in the UK security industry again.”

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. Our 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).​​​​​​​​​​​ ​