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Serious Fraud Office investigate Crawley-based G4S
12:39pm Thursday 11th July 2013 in News
The Justice Secretary has told MPs he is to ask the Serious Fraud Office to look at the Government's electronic tagging contract with Crawley-based G4S after auditors discovered the security giant ,along with another firm, had overcharged the Government by "tens of millions of pounds".
Chris Grayling told the House of Commons that G4S has refused to take part in an additional audit so the Government can rule out the possibility that that dishonesty was involved in any of the contracts, while Serco has agreed to this demand.
Mr Grayling said an initial audit, launched when the billing issues were disclosed in May, found that the Government had been charged in cases when Serco and G4S were not providing electronic tagging - and in a small number of cases when the offender was known to have died.
He said: "The billing practices in question were clearly unacceptable and the Government will take all necessary steps to secure a refund for the taxpayer."
Serco has agreed to withdraw from the current tender process for electronic monitoring, while the Justice Secretary is to instigate moves to exclude G4S as the company is still attempting to bid.
The audit revealed that overcharging began at least as far back as the start of the current electronic monitoring contracts in 2005 - but could have dated as far back as the previous contracts let in 1999.
It also found that contract managers in the Ministry of Justice discovered some of the issues following a routine inspection in 2008 - but did nothing to tackle the problem, Mr Grayling said.
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