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Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary for Scotland: Thematic Inspection Serious Fraud



Structures & resources in Scotland

The fraud map of Scotland is closely associated with that of the UK. At UK level the main organisations that work together with Scotland to control fraud are:

  • APACS (the UK Payments Association)
  • Attorney General's Office
  • CIFAS ( UK Fraud Prevention Service)
  • DWP (Department of Work & Pensions)
  • FSA (Financial Services Agency)
  • HMRC (Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs)
  • IFB (Insurance Fraud Bureau)
  • SOCA (Serious Organised Crime Agency).

There are also fora and bodies such as the Fraud Advisory Panel, Fraud Forums, Fraud Liaison Group, UK Expert Group on Fraud and many others that assist in this area. There are also UK agencies such as the Serious Fraud Office that have no Scottish responsibilities, and European agencies such as OLAF (European Anti-Fraud Office).

In Scotland there are many players on the stakeholder map. They include:

  • ACPOS (Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland)
  • Audit Scotland
  • COPFS (Crown Office & Procurator Fiscal Service)
  • police forces
  • SCDEA (Scottish Crime & Drug Enforcement Agency)
  • Scottish Government
  • Trading Standards.

There are also many fora and bodies, including:

Concerted Inter-Agency Criminal Finances Group (Scotland) ( CICFAS) (now called the Scottish Asset Recovery Group, ( SARG))
Acts as a strategic body chaired by SCDEA. Stakeholders include HMRC, SCDEA, SOCA, DWP, COPFS, & Scottish Government, among others. The role of this body is under review.

East of Scotland Fraud Forum ( ESFF)
A geographically-based grouping seeking to bring to Scotland the benefits derived by the North East Fraud Forum in England.

Organised Fraud & Intelligence Group ( OFIG)
There are five regional groups (sub-groups of CIFAS) in the UK. The Scottish group includes financial sector businesses, Scottish police forces, HMRC, & SOCA, among others.

Scottish Business Crime Centre ( SBCC)
SBCC disseminates information, runs seminars, and is a centre of information exchange. Much of its work is aligned to ACPOS Community Safety but it does also provide a secretariat function for the SFCG & sub-groups.

Scottish Financial Crime Group ( SFCG)
Chaired by the ACPOS lead on Fraud, it includes participants from the private sector. It is a strategic group with sub-groups for fraud, e-crime, physical security & information-sharing.

Scottish Financial Investigators Practitioners Forum
A practitioners' group from across the Scottish police forces.

Scottish Working Group on Fraud
A sub-group of the SFCG Fraud group, comprising Fraud Squad practitioners from across the Scottish police forces.

Serious Organised Crime Taskforce
Chaired by the Cabinet Secretary for Justice, it includes the Lord Advocate, ACPOS, SCDEA, SOCA, HMRC, & Scottish Prison Service among others.

Consultation by the National Fraud Strategic Authority Working Group has identified 95 fraud-related bodies across the UK, though even this number is not considered exhaustive. In Scotland there are too many with overlaps of role and membership. These need to be rationalised to clarify their purpose and identify the most appropriate attendees. Some stakeholders suggested that participation in several fora reflected the dissatisfaction of many of their colleagues at the ineffectiveness of groups they had previously attended.