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Over £2.5 billion is stolen from UK Charities each year, equal to approximately a quarter of the money raised from the public, and one in seven charities do not invest in fraud prevention. The figures are staggering.
We are regularly instructed in Charity fraud cases. We were recently appointed as Forensic Accountant and Expert Witness by the solicitors acting for the defendant in a case which involved depriving a charity of £285,000. We were able to calculate the amount stolen, how the shortfall occurred, how the defendant may have made up the shortfall, and consider the time-line over which the alleged misuse of profits from the lottery took place.
Figures from the UK Government show that the annual loss to the UK economy through counterfeiting and piracy is £9 billion, plus 80,500 job losses each year.
We are regularly instructed in cases involving counterfeit trading. A recent case involved proceedings against a man who pleaded guilty to six offences. Appointed as Forensic Accountant and Expert Witness by his solicitors, we were able to show Southwark Crown Court that a significant proportion of the alleged Benefit from criminal activity derived from legitimate income from rental income and legitimate sales of non-counterfeit goods. The Prosecution alleged Benefit figure was £604,942 and the Prosecution figure for Available Amount (i.e. realisable assets) was £2,457,301. The defendant was ordered to pay £200,000 plus costs.
The confiscation proceedings following one man’s conviction for being involved in a conspiracy to supply class A drugs have now been concluded. Appointed as Forensic Accountant and Expert Witness by his solicitors, we were able to show Birmingham Crown Court that a significant proportion of the alleged Benefit from criminal activity derived from legitimate income from his property maintenance business, rental income, the breeding and sale of puppies, and the sale of pigeons. The Prosecution alleged Benefit figure of £733,705 was agreed at £340,000. We were also able to show the Court that deductions for all secured liabilities, including mortgages, should be made from the equity in rental properties owned by him. The prosecution alleged figure for Available Amount (i.e. realisable assets) of £194,091 was agreed at £34,000.
In a recent case, we were instructed by the Prosecution in relation to alleged fraud in the care sector. A husband and wife repeatedly submitted invoices to care sector organisations, fraudulently claiming hours supposedly worked by staff. We were able to compare the hours recorded on thousands of workers’ payslips to the hours charged on invoices to the care sector organisations, highlighting significant discrepancies. Cross examination by the defence took 4 hours. The husband and wife were convicted and sentenced to a combined total of 10 years and nine months in prison.
EXPERT WITNESSES & FORENSIC CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS
DAVIDSONS FORENSIC ACCOUNTANTS
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