Fraud and Corruption
What is fraud?
The intentional distortion of records by persons internal or external to the Council which is carried out to conceal the misappropriation of assets or otherwise for gain.
What is corruption?
The offering, giving, soliciting or acceptance of an inducement or reward, which may influence the action of any person. This involves the abuse of an officer's or Member's position within the Council in order to confirm an unfair advantage on a third party.
Who could commit fraud & corruption?
Fraud or corruption may be committed against the Council from inside (employee fraud), or from outside the Council by third parties (external fraud).
Who in the Council will deal with my allegation?
Either the Head of Internal Audit or the Fraud Investigation manager.
Do I have to give my name & address?
No. If you want to leave information anonymously you can call the confidential report line on 01268 882250 (24-hour answer phone service). Alternatively you can talk to someone in person and still withhold your name and address. However you should be aware that if the investigator is not able to contact you to clarify or request further information, this could hinder the investigation.
Will my name be revealed to the persons under investigation?
As far as possible your name will not be revealed. The investigation would aim to prove the allegations you make by other means. However, if enough evidence is gathered to support your allegations and a prosecution is pursued, the Council may be required to disclose to the Court details of the source of the information leading to the investigation.
What action will the Council take when they receive the allegation?
The Council will undertake the following in respect of all allegations made: -
- Consider each case on its merits and investigate if appropriate, all enquiries being carried out with the utmost propriety.
- Work within guidelines based on best practice and relevant legislation.
- Instigate disciplinary action, in-house prosecution in accordance with the Council's Fraud and Corruption Policy [pdf] 250KB or referral to the Police where it is appropriate.
- In cases of Benefit Fraud, consider the appropriateness of other sanctions relating specifically to benefits.
- Seek compensation and costs as appropriate when public funds have been defrauded.
Will the Council tell me the outcome of their investigation?
In the majority of cases under the Data Protection Act 1998, we will not be able to do this. In cases reported under the Whistleblowing Policy [pdf] 211KB the informant will be advised whether an investigation will take place. If a successful prosecution results from the information, the matter will become public knowledge and the Council will be able to advise you of the outcome of the investigation.
For further information please refer to the Anti Fraud and Corruption Policy [pdf] 250KB and Strategy and the Whistleblowing Policy [pdf] 211KB
To raise fraud and corruption concerns in respect of Benefits or any other Council activity, please ring the Fraud & Corruption Confidential Reportline - 01268 882250 (an answer phone operates outside of normal working hours).
Alternatively you can report Benefits fraud via:
and any other concerns regarding potential fraud or corruption via: