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Security News And Views

Reference Library – Security News And Views

Barred security director is found guilty of working without a licence and convicted again

Barred Security Director Is Found Guilty Of Working Without A Licence And Convicted Again

On 14 September 2017, at Llandudno Magistrates Court, Mark Pursglove and was found guilty of working without a licence, Rachel Williams for aiding and abetting Mr Pursglove, and Alan Williams was found guilty for providing false information. This is not the first time we have prosecuted Mark Pursglove. In February 2016, Mark Pursglove along with his company, Mark Pursglove Security Limited, pleaded guilty at Holyhead Magistrates Court to supplying unlicensed security operatives and providing false information to the SIA. As a result, we revoked Pursglove s licence to prevent him from working or operating in the private security industry.

This meant Pursglove could not personally carry out any licensable activities; nor could he manage, supervise or be a director of any company supplying security operatives to licensable roles. However, on 25 February 2016, Mark Pursglove formed a new security company called MP Security Services Ltd. It operated from the same offices and provided the same staff to the same contracts. Intelligence sent to us pointed to the fact that Mark Pursglove was the acting director of the new company and the sole shareholder.

We investigated MP Security Services Ltd, and found that Mark Pursglove had visited these customers premises shortly after his conviction, to offer reassurances. He had explained that the new company would continue to supply security operatives and that the terms of the contract would remain the same. He had also stated that he would not be involved in the business. During the investigation, we discovered that Mark Pursglove had listed one of his security guards as a company director without the guard s permission and later appointed a friend, Alan Williams, as a director. He also appointed his partner, Rachel Williams, to undertake a managerial and supervisory role. It became clear that Mark Pursglove was trying to disguise his role in the company.

Our investigators suspected that both appointments were false and requested information from Alan Williams, as he was the named director. He provided this information but the SIA doubted its validity and believed that Mark Pursglove continued to run the company himself. As a result, we gathered further evidence and prosecuted Mark Pursglove, Rachel Williams and Alan Williams. They all pled not guilty; however, all were found guilty.

Mark Pursglove was found guilty of acting as an unlicensed manager or supervisor and of acting as an unlicensed security director. This is a section 3 offence under the Private Security Industry Act (PSIA) 2001. Rachel Williams was found guilty for aiding and abetting Mark Pursglove to commit the above offences. Their sentencing was adjourned and will take place at Caernarfon Magistrates Court on 12 October 2017.

Alan Williams was found guilty of providing false information. He was fined 420 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of 42 and costs of 2750. Nathan Salmon, the Head of SIA Criminal Investigations, said:

Mark Pursglove continued to operate as a provider of security services despite his previous conviction and knowing full well we had revoked his licence. He tried to disguise his own involvement within the company by using others, placing them in key roles within the company and changing the name of his business. Using individuals as a front will not protect businesses from prosecution; the Private Security Industry Act specifically interprets the role and responsibilities of directors and the SIA will assess personal liability, meaning those guilty of offences cannot hide behind others. This strong conviction highlights the fact that security regulation exists in order to protect those who use contracted security services, as well as the general public.

It also helps to 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 FacebookBarred Security Director Is Found Guilty Of Working Without A Licence And Convicted Again (Security Industry Authority) and TwitterBarred Security Director Is Found Guilty Of Working Without A Licence And Convicted Again (SIAuk).

Court fines unlicensed Leeds security director and his company

Court Fines Unlicensed Leeds Security Director And His Company

On 18 August, at Leeds Magistrates Court, Aaron Mohammed was fined for working without an SIA licence. His company, Twenty Four 7 Security & CCTV Ltd, was also prosecuted for supplying unlicensed guards. Aaron Mohammed pleaded guilty to all the offences, on 21 August. The court fined him 100 and ordered him to pay costs of 2,251 and a victim surcharge of 30. The company itself was also fined 100 and ordered to pay costs of 2,251 and a victim surcharge of 30.

The court stated that all the fines must be paid in full by August 2018 when Aaron Mohammed is released from the custodial sentence he is currently serving for unrelated matters. Our Head of Criminal Investigations, Nathan Salmon, said:

Aaron Mohammed was not licensed to manage or supervise those engaged in licensable activity. He supplied unlicensed security operatives to his customers and ignored numerous attempts by us to engage with him. Throughout 2017, we have been investigating a number of security businesses in West Yorkshire, all appear to be closely linked to each other. We will continue to pursue and take action against those businesses that flout the regulation and are determined to root out poor business practices.

We began investigating Twenty Four 7 Security & CCTV Ltd as part of a crackdown on security companies who were suspected of deploying unlicensed guards. We established that Aaron Mohammed had secured a contract to guard at seven sites across the Leeds and Bradford area of West Yorkshire.

On several occasions, from December 2016 to January 2017, we requested information relating to contracts. All the attempts we made to engage with Aaron Mohammed and his company were ignored. To investigate further, in December 2016, our investigators inspected several sites and found two security guards working without a licence at two sites. Deploying unlicensed security operatives constitutes an offence under the Private Security Industry Act 2001.

The security guards stated that they were employed by Twenty Four 7 Security & CCTV Ltd and explained that Aaron Mohammed was their boss. This led our investigators to check whether Aaron Mohammed was licensed as director of the company; he was not and this is also an offence. Aaron Mohammed was formally interviewed in June and admitted to being unlicensed as a director, supplying unlicensed guards and ignoring our requests for information.

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 FacebookCourt Fines Unlicensed Leeds Security Director And His Company (Security Industry Authority) and TwitterCourt Fines Unlicensed Leeds Security Director And His Company (SIAuk).

SIA responds to coverage on Benchmarking Security and Stewarding Resourcing

SIA Responds To Coverage On Benchmarking Security And Stewarding Resourcing

The SIA welcomes the spotlight being shone on the continuing need for recruitment and retention of good quality staff in the events sector. The report raises some health challenges about how adequately the current market is supplying qualified and vetted security operatives and the problems that losing skilled staff represents to the industry.
A figure of 40% reduction in renewals of SIA licences has been cited in the reporting of the study. It is worth setting this in context:

  • This figure has been derived from some possible projections that the SIA had commissioned in early 2016.
  • The data quoted from the projections are only about SIA Door Supervision licences (the most relevant licence to the events sector) and not the whole regulated security industry.
  • The projection represents the worst-case-future-scenario based on certain modelling techniques and is not intended as an accurate picture of the current position in the industry.

The Benchmarking Security and Stewarding Resourcing study correctly highlights that a significant proportion of people do not renew their three year SIA licence. Each year these exiting licence holders are usually replaced by new applicants for SIA licences, so that the overall number of licence holders does vary to a degree, but not as significantly as suggested by some recent reporting. Our records show that the actual number of people holding door supervision licences has fallen between 2013 and 2017 by about 10%.

The data should not be interpreted as a 40% reduction in the number of SIA licence holders who decide to renew their licences but this does not mean that the industry are not currently facing significant difficulties in the recruitment and retention of quality staff
Notes:

  1. The SIA licences certain sectors within the private security industry.

    Door Supervisors are required for security work in relation to licensed premises and events.

  2. SIA licences (except vehicle immobilisation in Northern Ireland) last for a period of three years.
  3. For your further information, we show below the number of SIA Door Supervision licence holders at the 31st March since 2011.
  4. The London 2012 Games had some impact on licence application numbers.
  5. The table below shows the number of door supervision licence holders in each year from 2011 – 2017

SIA Door Supervision Licence Holders 2011-2017 Year (31st March) Licence Holders 2011203,854 2012208,680 2013224,619 2014221,288 2015219,590 2016200,523 2017201,821

You can download the report Benchmarking Security and Stewarding Resourcing here. 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 FacebookSIA Responds To Coverage On Benchmarking Security And Stewarding Resourcing (Security Industry Authority) and TwitterSIA Responds To Coverage On Benchmarking Security And Stewarding Resourcing (SIAuk).