In December 2018, Steven Nixon from Portadown, who was the owner of Eventsafe Security Ltd at the time, was given a nine month custodial sentence for fraud, and a further three months for supplying unlicensed security operative. Both sentences were suspended for three years with an additional 100 hours of unpaid Community service.
Nixon, who has just finished serving a 4 month jail sentence for breaching the community service order, was further determined by the courts to have benefitted to a total of £237,756.14 last week. His conviction, related to numerous offences against the Private Security Industry Act 2001, enabled the Security Industry Authority (SIA) to seek the confiscation of his assets.
Due to his currently available assets falling short of the total benefit of his crime, the SIA will be able to claim additional assets as he grows them until the full figure is reached.
“This confiscation order stands as a warning to others who may choose to engage in criminality within the private security industry. Our powers under the Proceeds of Crime Act are far-reaching, and although Mr. Nixon initially believed he could hide some of his assets from our Investigators, we were able to trace them and present them to the court. Those who believe that they can commit criminal offences, and then hide the proceeds of their crime in this way are very much mistaken.
The security industry plays a vital part in ensuring public safety, and expectations are high of those who operate within it. The vast majority of the industry in Northern Ireland are professional and deliver services to a very high standard. The number of those who persist in committing offences and who show a complete disregard for regulation is small, but it is these individuals, and those supplying them, who present a risk to the public. We will pursue these individuals vigorously and where a conviction is obtained, we will use our powers under the Proceeds of Crime Act to recover the benefit of any criminality and ensure that committing crime within the security industry does not pay,” said Peter Eastbrook of the SIA Criminal Investigation team.
Nixon’s prosecution and confiscation follows an investigation launched in by the SIA in January 2017 after a tip led them to discover that he had been running Eventsafe as a sole trader despite having his license revoked due to previous criminal behaviour. Nixon proceeded to ignore and then mislead the investigation which culminated in two convictions for fraud and two offices under the PSIA 2001. Prior to this, Mr. Nixon had 39 convictions.