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Counter Fraud Corruption Strategy

Last updated on: 09-Apr-2021

3. Definitions

Fraud

Any intentional act or omission designed to deceive others, resulting in, or intended to result in the victim suffering a loss and/or the perpetrator achieving a gain. The Fraud Act 2006 sets out, in broad terms, three categories of offence:

  • Fraud by false representation
  • Fraud by failing to disclose information, and
  • Fraud by abuse of position (exploiting a position of trust within the authority for financial or material benefit).

There are also offences for possessing and making or supplying articles for use in such frauds.

Theft

The Theft Act 1968 defines theft as the dishonest taking of property belonging to another person with the intention of depriving the owner permanently of its possession. In the context of the local authority this may include dishonestly acquiring, using, or disposing of physical or intellectual property belonging to the council or to individual members of the authority.

Corruption

The abuse of one’s position for direct or indirect personal gain. It covers the offering, giving, soliciting or the acceptance of an inducement or reward which may influence the action of any person.

Bribery

Bribery is defined as the offering, promising, giving, accepting or soliciting of money, a gift or other advantage as an inducement to do something that is illegal or a breach of trust in the course of carrying out an organisation’s activities. The Bribery Act 2010 sets out, in broad terms, four categories of offence; bribing another person, receiving a bribe, bribing a foreign public official and the failure of a relevant commercial organization to prevent bribery by an associated person. In essence, the Act makes it a criminal offence to give a bribe to or accept a bribe.

Money laundering

The process of moving illegally generated funds through a cycle of transformation in order to create the end appearance of legitimately earned funds. The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 details the three principal money laundering offences as:

  • assisting another to retain the benefit of crime,
  • acquisition, possession or use of criminal proceeds, and
  • concealing or transferring proceeds to avoid prosecution.

In addition, there are related offences for failing to report where a person has knowledge, suspicion or reasonable grounds for knowledge or suspicion that money laundering has taken place, as well as for tipping off a person that a disclosure has taken place.

Council Officers and Members who suspect money laundering activities should report their concern to the Council’s nominated Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO) (Head of Audit & Counter Fraud) and the Section 151 Officer (Chief Finance Officer/Director of Corporate Services). Further details are contained in the Anti-Money Laundering Policy.

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