Convicted Wiltshire security boss must pay £84,000 as proceeds of crime or face two-year jail term

A Wiltshire security firm boss has had assets of over £80,000 confiscated after being convicted of providing unlicensed security officers to a school over a period of 12 years. Steven Renouf, the former owner of Taghna Security Services, has 28 days to comply with the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 confiscation order, which was ordered at Winchester Crown Court on Thursday 28 February. If Renouf fails to pay £84,610.29 within that time, he faces a default sentence of two years in jail. 

The confiscation was sought by the Security Industry Authority (SIA) following Renouf’s conviction for a range of offences against the Private Security Industry Act 2001, including supplying unlicensed security officers, failing to provide information and providing false information to SIA investigators.

Renouf sold his house while under investigation. The SIA obtained a court order denying Renouf the proceeds of the sale pending the outcome of the Proceeds of Crime Act hearing.

Pete Easterbrook of the SIA’s criminal investigations team said: “Steven Renouf acted with great irresponsibility over a period of more than ten years. His criminal behaviour in providing untrained, unvetted and unlicensed security staff at a school could have had serious consequences for those that he had been trusted to protect. In the end, the consequences could not have been more serious for Renouf himself. He has lost his business, his SIA licence and over £80,000, including the proceeds from the sale of his house. He’s also now a convicted criminal. This case should stand as a warning to anyone who’s tempted to commit criminality in the private security industry. The SIA will prosecute and, wherever possible, we will seek to recover the proceeds of criminality to ensure that crime really doesn’t pay.”

Deceiving the client

Renouf had supplied up to 40 unlicensed staff to a school in Wiltshire over the course of a contract dating from 2006. In addition to deceiving his client, Renouf had dishonestly told his own employees that they didn’t require a licence. Renouf originally appeared at Swindon Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday 6 November last year and pleaded guilty to all 23 charges set out against him.

SIA investigators made a pre-planned inspection visit to the school on 7 February last year and found two unlicensed security operatives at work. The school immediately cancelled Renouf’s contract.

The SIA launched an investigation and made formal requests for information from Taghna Security Services. The company’s responses were incomplete and included falsified invoices as well as other incorrect information intended to show that Renouf had been operating legally.

As a result, Renouf was charged not only with failing to provide information, but also with two counts of providing false information. These charges were in addition to 20 counts of supplying unlicensed security staff.

Five of Renouf’s employees, who had all previously pleaded guilty to working unlawfully for Taghna Security Services as unlicensed security officers, were sentenced at Swindon Magistrates’ Court on 9 October last year.

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 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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