Unlicensed security director handed suspended prison sentence as court considers confiscation of assets

On Monday 6 November at Caernarfon Crown Court, Mark Pursglove was sentenced for working without a Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence following earlier hearings in September and October this year. At this latest hearing, Pursglove was handed a four-month prison sentence suspended for two years. He was also sentenced to a Community Order of 150 hours’ unpaid work. As part of this hearing, Pursglove was referred for the confiscation of assets under the Proceeds of Crime Act (2002). As a result, a confiscation timetable was set.

Pursglove is a serial offender. He was found guilty of working without a licence on 14 September and this is the second time he has been prosecuted. In February 2016, Pursglove – as reported by Risk UK – was found guilty of supplying unlicensed security operatives.

When sentencing Pursglove, the presiding Judge said: “I do not think you appreciate how serious this matter is. A licence is required for public protection. It ensures members of the public know that, when they’re at their most vulnerable, for example when they are drunk, there are ‘calm heads’ around who have their best interests at heart. The court takes a serious view of this. You breached your licence in 2016 and a substantial financial penalty was imposed (over £8,000). You lost your licence in early 2016 and you tried to manufacture your way around this. You were found guilty by the magistrates of two serious offences. The matter is aggravated by your failure to admit your guilt and show contrition to the probation officer ahead of the hearing.”

Nathan Salmon, criminal investigations manager at the SIA, explained: “I’m hopeful that Mark Pursglove’s sentence will stop his involvement in the private security industry. For several years, the SIA has had to use the strongest sanction and prosecute him because of his ongoing offending. However, he was arrogant and wilfully ignored his 2016 conviction and the loss of his licence, a matter which the SIA simply could not ignore. We will pursue the recovery of Mark Pursglove’s assets, which he has as a result of his crimes. This action will prevent the reinvestment of profits made by criminals and limit their unfair advantage over legitimate businesses.”

The next hearing will be at Caernarfon Crown Court on 9 April 2018. Pursglove will be ordered to pay a victim surcharge and costs at the end of confiscation proceedings.

About the Author

Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications)

Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting.

In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector.

In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute’s George van Schalkwyk Award.

An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award.

Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site.

Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media.

Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014.

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