Wharf Guards Limited and director sentenced for employing unlicensed security officers

Wharf Guards Limited, a Cambridge-based security company, has been sentenced following a Security Industry Authority (SIA) investigation into the use of unlicensed security officers.

At Cambridge Magistrates Court on 8 September 2016, the company (along with Richard Kinyanjui, director of Wharf Guards Limited) was sentenced for providing unlicensed security officers between June and August 2015. The operations manager, George Kalemera, was also sentenced for failing to supply information relating to the investigation.

The sentences follow an investigation in August last year, during which the SIA’s investigators made unannounced visits to three sites. At one site in Cambridge, an unlicensed security officer with no right to work in the UK was arrested and referred to the immigration services at the Home Office.

Following this targeted inspection, the SIA’s investigators attempted to conduct interviews with Kinyanjui and Kalemera on several occasions. Both failed to attend. Investigators also went to Kalemera’s home address to issue a request for information, but he failed to comply.

Offences and fines detailed

As a company, Wharf Guards Limited was fined £1,000 for each Section 5 offence relating to the Private Security Industry Act 2001 of providing unlicensed officers on three sites from June to August 2015. The company was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £120 and costs of £6,000 totalling £7,120.

Kinyanjui was fined £500 for each count of providing unlicensed security officers, which is a Section 5 offence under the Private Security Industry Act 2001. He was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £120 and costs of £3,000. The total fine was £4,620. The full amount is to be paid within one year.

Kalemera was fined £300 for failing to produce documents and information relating to the SIA’s investigation into Wharf Guards Limited. He was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £37 and costs of £1,000. The total fine was £1,337. The full amount is to be paid within six months.

Nathan Salmon, the SIA’s investigations manager, said: “We’re pleased with the strong penalties awarded against the company and defendants in this case. There are familiar traits to previous investigations we’ve undertaken in the East of England in recent years, and we will continue to prosecute those responsible for poor business practices. These defendants chose not to engage with the Regulator, but that proves not to be a barrier to prosecution.”

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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