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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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I have been arrested but not charged. i have been released

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hi i have been arrested but not charged. i have been released on conditional bail. the police unfortunately have taken my work laptop and mobile phone. i have to speak to my hr person on thursday. what do i tell them? i do not want to lose my job. Also if my employer does find out i have been arrested and released without been charged, will they be able to include this in future references?
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Why do you need to speak to HR? How long have you worked there for?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
i need to speak to them as i am off work at the moment. The HR person has asked me to call them, how do i explain that my mobile and laptop have been taken. i have worked there for 4 years
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.
Why were you arrested?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
i was arrested under an allegation that i had been talking to an underage girl online. my solicitor says that the evidence doesnt support this. in the conversations she does not mention she was 15
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.
Are HR likely to ask about the whereabouts of the laptop/phone?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
i dont know but i am off sick at the moment with anxiety and panic attacks. they might ask on thursday why im calling from another number or they might want to call me. at some point i will have to return to work and then they will ask me then why i havent got my laptop and mobile anymore
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.
For now, unless they specifically ask you about the items, do not say anything. Do not lie if they do ask and tell them what happened. I do not presume that they will be too happy with it but do not assume the worst yet. The good thing is you have sufficient service to be protected against unfair dismissal so they cannot just dismiss for any reason and must justify it is fair and that a fair procedure was followed. Just being arrested and not charged is unlikely to be sufficient, but if they find out you had used laptop or phone inappropriately and against company policy then they could discipline you for that. Similarly, if you are charged and found guilty and t affects you doing your job or the company’s name/image they could potentially consider dismissal but it is too early to deal with that. Finally, the reference issue. Potentially they can say it because it is the truth. However, one may question what relevance it has to an employment reference. So if they find that you had abused IT policies when using the laptop/phone they could mention that and in passing also state the arrest, but on its own, hey should not as it is not a matter relevant to your employment. I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (3, 4 or 5 stars) as that is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi you mention "but if they find out you had used laptop or phone inappropriately and against company policy then they could discipline you for that." . It didnt take place on a company laptop or phone but they took them anyway. does that make a difference?The reference issue is worrying me now. i was told that an employer couldnt mention anything like that until in the worst circumstances, i was charged. i talked to my union and he told me it was only at the point of being charged they could mention it on a reference (innocent until proved guilty) . what would happen if i resigned now? could they include it on my reference?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.
They could make a decision based on what they genuinely believe happened, however without any evidence that you used their laptop or phone for this that may be difficult to justify Reference - because the information is truthful, i.e. you were arrested and released without charge, it could potentially be mentioned. But it could amount to defamation by inference, that is why papers do not name arrested suspects util they are actually charged
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
ok last question in you experience what would you recommend for me to do. should i be honest with hr on thursday and let them know what happened. ( if i dont tell them up front they may consider i was trying to be evasive). i guess if i offered to resign they may be ok to not mention this in references?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
sorry one last point . should i tell them the nature of why the police have taken the items or just tell them theat the police have them. my solicitor told me to tell them that the police have told me not to mention the case. i will give you 5 stars thanks
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.
the right thing is to own up, then you are honest and not hiding anything. Do not rush into resigning - they may be supportive but i it looks like they may not, then consider it and perhaps try to agree on a reference before leaving
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
sorry one last point . should i tell them the nature of why the police have taken the items or just tell them theat the police have taken them. my solicitor told me to tell them that the police have told me not to mention the case. i will give you 5 stars thanks
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.
you do not have to give details but if asked directly try not to lie. I suppose you can try and palm it off by saying you cannot mention anything at this stage but eventually you may have to
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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