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5 November 2013 | Gurjit Degun
The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has launched a criminal investigation into government contracts with G4S and Serco over the provision of electronic tagging services, the agency has confirmed.
It follows an audit – the results of which were announced in July – that found instances where the companies were charging for tagging but none was taking place, leading to over-billing of tens of millions of pounds. The Ministry of Justice called for the SFO to probe G4S because it refused a further full audit.
G4S said it will “co-operate fully” with the SFO investigation. A statement said: “G4S confirms that it has today received notice that the director of the SFO has opened an investigation into the ‘contract for the provision of electronic monitoring services which commenced in April 2005 as amended and extended until the present day’.”
Serco was subject to a full audit by accountancy firm PwC following the announcement in July. The company confirmed it will also co-operate fully with the SFO investigation.