False Accounting, Fraud Theft &Amp; Offences Of Dishonesty
This is the sort of offence the police would consider charging a person where they are alleging that you have provided “false or misleading documents or indeed destroyed documents to make a gain or benefit for yourself”.
It is important to note that you cannot commit this offence unless you are aware of the deceptive nature of the documents in question. There is an overlap between this offence and that of “theft “and in police interviews the questions will invariably cover both scenarios.
In my experience such offences require careful analysis of the Prosecution case and analysis of evidence of records which are normally supplied in disc format to analyse the evidence. It also requires analysis of company policies and procedures in place used for accounting purposes. On many occasions having defended people charged with such offences it has transpired that the training of staff and auditing of the company’s own accounts is lacking in best practice rules which means that there are considerable errors in the production of that evidence.
Unfortunately the offence can also be committed by “omission”. Hence if you have failed to fill out the forms correctly whilst employed or in your business, you can be accused of this offence. However what needs to be examined is whether the omission is misleading in a way that is significant.
“S18 Theft Act” deals with the Liability of company officers for the offences committed by the company. Hence it can apply to directors who knowingly consent to the company carrying out offences.
If you are being investigated for offences of dishonesty you will need a solicitor who has experience in advising and preparing your case and analysing the prosecution data and seeking the necessary information from the police or the prosecution to prepare your case properly. Careful instructions will need to be taken along with your statement and comments on the evidence.