Brian Sims
Editor

SIA case realises six-month suspended sentence for North London male

ON FRIDAY 5 November, Khaled Hamed of North West London was handed a six-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, at Westminster Magistrates’ Court for committing fraud. The Security Industry Authority (SIA) brought forward the prosecution case.

Hamed originally pleaded guilty to committing three counts of fraud at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 8 October. At this month’s hearing, the court ordered him to pay £500 in court costs plus a victim surcharge of £115 in addition to levying the suspended sentence. Hamed is also subject to a three-month daily curfew between the hours of 7.00 am and 7.00 pm and must wear an electronic tag. Any non-compliance with this ruling will mean that Hamed will serve a jail sentence.

The court heard that this was Hamed’s first offence for fraud, although he had convictions for three previous offences, two of which were for violence.

Background to the case

Hamed joined SIA Approved Contractor Paragon Security Group as a security officer on 1 February 2019. During the company’s selection process, Hamed provided a number of items to support his job application. These included a copy of a front line door supervisor’s licence in his own name.

When Hamed subsequently presented himself for work in Covent Garden, the site supervisor realised that the licence was a counterfeit. He refused Hamed permission to enter the site and notified the Paragon Security Group.

The company then asked Hamed to attend a formal interview. During the subsequent meeting, Hamed admitted that he had paid a friend £200 for the counterfeit licence. Paragon Security Group notified the SIA who then started an investigation into the case.

The licence number was that of a genuine licence, but the image was of Hamed. SIA investigators invited Hamed for an interview, but he refused to engage with them. On that basis, the SIA decided to prosecute.

Hamed was required to appear in court on 7 February this year, but then failed to do so. As a consequence, the court issued a warrant for his arrest. Hamed was subsequently arrested and pleaded guilty to all of the charges listed.

Placing the public at risk

Mark Chapman, a criminal investigations manager at the SIA, commented: “Hamed is now a convicted fraudster and has been handed a jail sentence for deliberately using a fake licence. His existing criminal record would have meant that the SIA would not have granted him a licence. Hamed thought he could bypass the proper checks and balances until his deception was spotted by a vigilant site supervisor.”

Chapman continued: “The use of counterfeit SIA licences can give unqualified and unsuitable personnel the opportunity to work illegally within the security industry. This puts the public at risk because people doing this are neither suitably vetted nor trained. The SIA encourages all security companies to conduct the proper checks when employing staff. We are working together to identify those individuals who seek to circumvent the licensing regime, which itself exists to protect the public.”

Addressing Hamed in court, District Judge Oliver stated: “You pleaded guilty at the first opportunity to three serious offences. You didn’t disclose the fact that you had convictions and obtained a licence to work as a security officer. That is a serious matter. People who work in the security industry are to be appropriately vetted with appropriate information. You were plainly aware that you were not entitled to work in the industry and attempted to subvert the system. Indeed, you did so.”

Fraud Act 2006

The offences relating to the Fraud Act 2006 are:

*Section 1 (1) – Making a false representation with intent to cause loss to another or gain for himself or another

*Section 6 (1) – Possession of an article for use in the course of or in connection with fraud

*Section 7 – Making or using articles for use in frauds

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