On 11 September 2023, a man who had never held a genuine SIA licence was sentenced for offences relating to fraud by false representation.
Adewale Balogun was using a false instrument and possessing a false identity document when attempting to work as a licensed operative last summer at two separate events.
Balogun was sentenced at Bolton Crown Court where he received six-months imprisonment for using a false instrument, three months imprisonment for possession of a false identity document and three months imprisonment for fraud by false representation. The sentences were to run concurrently which were suspended for a period of 18 months, with a requirement of 150 hours of unpaid work to be undertaken. The court also ordered Balogun to pay prosecution costs of £500. He now holds a criminal record.
Balogun had gained employment with Number One Security Ltd, by using a counterfeit SIA licence and UK Residency Permit in the name of a genuine licensed operative, which he falsely claimed to be his own.
The case began when SIA (Security Industry Authority) investigators completed routine licence compliance checks on 11 and 12 June 2022 at a Manchester music festival, in partnership with Greater Manchester Police officers.
During the inspection, SIA investigators found Mr Balogun to be working with illegal documents. SIA checks on the licence he was using revealed that it was counterfeit. The image on the licence did not match the image the SIA held of the genuine licence holder.
Balogun was arrested by the police at the festival, where he then provided his correct identification. Balogun attended an initial interview under caution with the SIA’s criminal investigators on 20 December 2022, in the presence of a solicitor, where he provided “no comment” replies.
The SIA carried out additional investigations into Balogun’s activities as an unlicensed door supervisor. These revealed that he had also been deployed by a separate security company, via a sub-contractor, to a Bournemouth sporting tournament using the same false licence in June 2022.
Balogun failed to further engage with the investigation. On 26 June, at Bolton Magistrates’ Court, Balogun entered not guilty pleas to all matters and elected for trial at Crown Court.
The next hearing date took place on 31 July 2023, at Bolton Crown Court, where Balogun subsequently entered guilty pleas to all charges.
On imposing the sentence at Bolton Crown Court, Mr Recorder Lasker said: ‘You have never held a genuine SIA licence or undertaken any recognised training. You are of previous good character. You committed offences on more than one occasion. The offences do pass the custody threshold.’
Jenny Hart, one of the SIA’s criminal investigations managers, said: ‘Adewale Balogun was holding himself out to be someone who had been trained and qualified as a door supervisor, and that he had been vetted as someone who was fit and proper to hold a licence. His actions took away legitimate work from genuine SIA licence holders. The SIA licensing regime exists to protect the public. Balogun acted illegally and by doing so put people’s safety at risk. Mr Balogun now has a criminal record for the five serious offences including identity theft, fraud and forgery. I wish to thank Greater Manchester Police for assisting us in uncovering this offending and securing convictions.’