A Security Industry Authority-led multi-agency operation orchestrated to check on security licensing and tax evasion took place over two weekends in May.
With the support of HM Revenue and Customs and the Metropolitan Police Service, investigators from the Security Industry Authority (SIA) conducted checks on door supervisors and security officers working in London and Manchester.
The team was assembled after the SIA submitted intelligence to HMRC on companies and venues with doubtful employment statuses for their staff – a suspected tactic to evade the payment of tax.
Door supervisors and security officers
Over the first weekend, the operation focused on door supervisors working in licensed premises including pubs and clubs. On the final weekend of the month, the focus changed to security officers working in retail venues in shopping centres across the two cities.
In total, 180 security operatives were checked across 67 venues. Of those checked, a door supervisor in Stockport was found to be working with another person’s photocopied SIA licence. Enquiries are being taken forward by the police.
A further five warnings were issued to individuals for failing to notify the SIA of a change of their address, which is a breach of SIA licensing conditions.
HMRC investigations are ongoing.
Working together to tackle crime
The SIA’s director of partnerships and interventions, Dave Humphries, commented: “It’s encouraging that the SIA, the police and the HMRC are working together to tackle crime. This gives a clear message that non-compliance with the law, be it to do with the requirements of SIA licence regulation or tax evasion, will not be tolerated within the private security industry.”
Andrew Odin of HMRC’s Specialist Investigations Division said: “We work with other Government departments and agencies to crack down on those who don’t want to pay what they should. Our message is clear… If you seek to evade tax or defraud the tax system, HMRC can and will track you down. You will face not only a heavy fine, but possibly a criminal prosecution as well.”