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Aziz Rahman assesses the SFO’s disclosure failings that saw its Serco prosecution collapse

Author: Azizur Rahman  4 May 2021

The Serious Fraud Office’s disclosure errors led to its failure to convict two individuals over Serco’s electronic tagging fraud. 

With the judge directing the jury to return not guilty verdicts, Rahman Ravelli founder Aziz Rahman wrote an article about the SFO’s shortcomings for Fraud Intelligence. 

In his piece, Aziz outlines how the SFO concluded a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) with Serco, which accepted it had defrauded the Ministry of Justice over a contract to electronically monitor prisoners and paid a £19.2 million fine.  

He details criticism that has been aimed at the SFO, with the Serco prosecution being yet another example of nobody being convicted after a corporate has avoided prosecution by clinching a DPA. There has been no successful prosecution of an individual after a company has secured a DPA. 

The Serco case is not the first time the SFO has faced criticism from a judge for its approach to disclosure in criminal proceedings against an individual that have followed a company entering into a DPA. Aziz believes there is little excuse for the SFO to still be making disclosure-related mistakes. According to him, it needs to take a close look at itself to avoid any similar failings. 

Aziz's article featured in Fraud Intelligence (subscription required).

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Azizur Rahman

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Aziz Rahman is Senior Partner at Rahman Ravelli and its founder. His ability to coordinate national, international and multi-agency defences has led to success in some of the most significant corporate crime cases of this century and top rankings in international legal guides. He is recognised worldwide as one of the most capable legal experts regarding top-level, high-value commercial and financial disputes.

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