Draft Sentencing Guidelines produced today aim to provide clear guidance on sentencing guidelines for those convicted of fraud, money laundering and bribery offences to help promote a consistent approach in courts in England and Wales.
According to Crimeline, ‘More than 16,000 people were sentenced for fraud in 2011, and the guidelines cover the great variety of fraud offences that target businesses, public money,
charities and individuals:
- Private sector fraud cost business £45.5bn in 2011.
Examples are employees claiming for bogus expenses, suppliers making fraudulent payment claims, cash for crash scams and other insurance fraud and people falsifying mortgage applications.
- Fraud targeting public money amounted to £20.3bn in 2011. The biggest part of this is tax fraud like income tax evasion and VAT fraud. Other examples are council tax fraud and benefit fraud
- Fraud against the not-for-profit sector cost charities £1.1bn in 2011. This may take the form of a charity employee diverting donations to their own bank account, someone conning grant funding from a charity on false pretences, or bogus charity collectors.
- Fraud against individuals cost people £6.1bn in 2011. It includes Ponzi schemes, cowboy builders, identity fraud and internet-based offences like phishing.’