At PSFU, we are committed to putting complainants and victims at the heart of everything we do. We are aware that fraud is not a victimless crime. We understand the distress it causes. We not only want to prevent it continuing or recurring, we want to do everything we can to ensure we get justice for you and other victims.
In our dealings with you we will comply with the principles guiding the treatment of victims as set out in Sections 7 to 9 of the Victim Rights Act 2002 and will:
• Treat you with courtesy and compassion; and
• Respect your dignity and privacy.
What you can expect from us if you are a victim of fraud?
1. A courteous receipt of your complaint and an ongoing contact person
Whether you contact us by phone; email; or other means, you can expect a prompt acknowledgement of your complaint or query within two working days after we receive it. You will also be given the name and contact details of the person dealing with your complaint and be advised of the next steps.
2. A prompt response to your initial complaint
We will give you a prompt response to your initial complaint by advising you either what additional information we may require from you to progress the matter, or by giving you a timeframe for our initial inquiries.
3. A thorough consideration of the complaint
We take complaints seriously. Depending on the nature of your complaint, we may informally seek documents or information and, where there are reasonable grounds to suspect fraud, we may exercise our statutory powers to obtain information from other persons. Through every stage of our inquiries, your complaint will be reviewed by either one of the SFO’s General Managers; General Counsel and/or the Director.
4. An informative response to your complaint
Fraud inquiries are usually complex matters. Our investigations will be determined by the information or evidence that comes to light, and by how the relevant law applies to a particular case. If the matter is not pursued at any point, you will have a thorough explanation of the reasons for our decision and, where appropriate, you will have other options outlined to you.
5. Ongoing updates regarding the progress of an investigation
We will regularly update most of our cases on our website [link]. Some cases may be confidential for a variety of reasons in which case there may not be an update on the website, but you will be able to contact the Case Manager assigned to the case for further information.
6. Advice as to the decision made following an investigation
We will contact known complainants and victims at the earliest opportunity when an investigation has concluded.
We will also return any documents received from you during the investigation.
7. Assistance with preparation for giving evidence in Court
Where fraud or other charges are laid, and subject to any restrictions (such as name suppression) we will advise of the charges and the next steps in the prosecution process. Where you are a witness in the trial, the Case Manager responsible will contact you regarding the time for giving evidence, how any costs associated with giving evidence can be met, and will be able to answer any questions you have regarding this process.
8. Prompt advice as to the outcome of a trial
We understand the importance of bringing some conclusion to what is often a very demanding and long process. We will not only advise you of the Court’s decision, but also of the sentence imposed and/or any appeals which are lodged. Where it is relevant, our Case Manager will also liaise with you regarding giving a victim impact statement for the purpose of sentencing.