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james bruce
james bruce, Solicitor-Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 7562
Experience:  Owner at James Bruce Solicitors
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My wife was wrongly accused of fraud by a colleague at work

Customer Question

My wife was wrongly accused of fraud by a colleague at work and reported her to police. The police investigated fully and the CPS decided there was no case to answer. The colleague is not happy and has pressed the employer to investigate for evidence of misconduct. The employer intends to get the witness statements from the police and review them internally to decide if there is any misconduct that can be pinned on her. Is it lawful for the police to release statements made under caution in an investigation which resulted in no charges or any other action to an employer without the employees permission. For clarity - the employer is the MoD; the Police Force is the MoD Police - but the interview and investiogation was carried out under PACE etyc - so the MoD POlice are just a police force in this context
JA: Where is your wife? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: England
JA: What steps has your wife taken so far?
Customer: She has told the employer she does not give consent for the MoD Police to share witness statements with the MoD for the purposes of internal disciplinary procedures. The employer has said the MoD Police is part of the MoD and they can do what they like.
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: The deciding officer in the internal investigation seeking evidence of misconduct following the Police taking no action is the head of the team which made the false allegation.
Submitted: 19 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  james bruce replied 19 days ago.
Hello, I hope you are well. My name is***** am a solicitor advocate and  I will be assisting you with your question today. I am very sorry to hear of the problem you are experiencing and I will do my best to help you with this matter.
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
one thing to add - my wife successfully won a tribunal against the MoD 18 months ago for 'discrimination on the grounds of sex' for which the MoD paid damages. This feels like a witch hunt
Expert:  james bruce replied 19 days ago.

The employer can indeed hold their own investigation relation to any possible employment  misconduct. That is unrelated to the criminal investigation that took place..

The employer may find that misconduct has taken place. The burden of proof for that is civil (balance of probabilities) whereas the CPS work on the burden of (beyond all doubt).

Because ether CPS did not proceed could be for a number or reasons, no offence committed, lack of evidence to support prosecution, no realistic prospect of a successful conviction, not in the public interest to proceed etc. So not being charged does not necessarily mean innocence.

No the police cannot release statements taken in a criminal investigation to the employer. Codes of practise still apply.

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
thank you
Expert:  james bruce replied 19 days ago.

your welcome.

Thank you for using Just Answer and for allowing me to assist you with your legal enquiry. I am pleased I was able to be of assistance. Please do not hesitate to come back to me for further advice on this or any other legal matter. It will be my pleasure to be able to assist you again.