Last Wednesday, 28 June, Olajide Shomoye from Erith was handed a suspended jail sentence of 24-weeks imprisonment, suspended for 18-months.
Bexley Magistrates’ Court also ordered him to pay £2,887 compensation to his victim MNX Security. In addition, the same court also sentenced him to do 100 hours unpaid work and pay £85 prosecution costs. The prosecution for fraud was brought by the Security Industry Authority (SIA) and the sentence follows his guilty plea entered on 7 June 2023.
Mr Shomoye did 27 illegal shifts between 18 May 2021 and 12 July 2021 using a cloned licence.
During the SIA’s criminal investigation into the use of cloned licences in the private security industry, investigators sought to interview Mr Shomoye as he was a former director of BS Security Management Services Ltd (now dissolved).
Mr Shomoye was granted an SIA door supervisor’s licence on 26 July 2021. Investigators sought information about his activities during his time as the company director between 17 August 2021 and 7 December 2021.
The investigation identified Mr Shomoye as a person using a cloned licence as the image shown on the licence was familiar to the SIA’s Criminal Investigation team.
The team reviewed ongoing case files and the image appeared on the cloned licence of a legitimate licence holder. The licence holder confirmed in person to the SIA that the licence details were his and that he did not know Olajide Shomoye.
On 2 August 2022 Mr Shomoye’s licence was suspended by the SIA. On 9 August 2022 Mr Shomoye was interviewed under caution by SIA criminal investigators at the SIA’s headquarters. During the interview he confirmed that he was the director of BS Security Management Ltd. He admitted that he had previously worked for a casino business but only as a cleaner. During the interview he denied that the images taken of him at the signing-in stage at his workplace were of him. He also confirmed the image displayed on the cloned licence to be him and this was corroborated by records held by the Home Office Immigration and Enforcement team.
MNX held the security contract for East and South-East casino businesses. MNX had sub-contracted to BS Security Management Services Ltd to supply security to them.
Karen Hammond, District Judge said at the sentencing:
These offences are serious where only a custodial sentence is justified. Given the absence of previous convictions and Mr Shomoye’s guilty plea, I will suspend this sentence. You were not trained, the industry needs fit and proper people to act in this capacity. You were holding yourself out to be trained when you were not entitled to do so. People who work in the security industry are required to have accreditation to be fit and proper persons. By bypassing this procedure, you are involved as a company director, you cloned this card and worked as a security operative in circumstances when you were not entitled to do so, one because of your immigration status and secondly because you were not qualified by SIA regulations. I agree that this case is one of high culpability. It was not a ‘one-off’. You manipulated the system and took advantage of it on 27 occasions. It needs to be made clear to others that such offending will be met with a custodial sentence… you need to be very clear of the nature and gravity of the offence committed.
Nicola Bolton, one of the SIA’s criminal investigations managers, said:
Mr Shomoye was convicted of cloning someone else’s legitimate licence as a cover to then work illegitimately in the private security industry. He chose to work illegally 27 times. The licensing regime is there to protect the public and only fit and proper people can be licensed. He has been prosecuted, has been handed a suspended prison sentence and now has a criminal record. He has also been handed a significant compensation order. Wednesday’s sentence by Judge Hammond has rightly sought to recompense Mr Shomoye’s client victim for the fraudulent behaviour.