Stealing is almost always a lamentable act, but there are times when it will be met with more outrage than others.
A man stealing a loaf of bread to feed his family, most would argue, is understandable if not excusable. Then there are cases such as the one involving Christopher Copeland – these are deplorable incidents of malicious criminal activity, ones in which fraud investigations conducted by forensic accounting specialists can help deliver justice.
Mr Copeland, 52, stole more than £300,000 that was intended for the Help the Heroes charity by committing serious fraud; he used a team of fundraisers to bring in the cash from generous donors before then putting the money in his own account. It was announced on 15 September that he would be jailed for four-and-a-half years.
When a fraud case involves theft from philanthropic causes it is always likely to hit the headlines, as Mr Copeland’s did. In reality though, there are a huge number of cases that people will never hear about in which opportunistic fraudsters have siphoned off money into their own wallet – luckily Frenkels Forensics is on hand to ensure that such acts do not leave a business or individual out of pocket.
Fraud can take place from both internal and external sources. In some cases employees can commit fraud by sticking their hand in the proverbial cookie jar, slowly amassing their own small fortune by stealing from the company. In other cases an external threat can fraudulently take money from a business, perhaps by stealing transaction data, through which they can then exploit people’s bank accounts.
Whatever form the fraud might take, and often now it is becoming increasingly complex, forensic accounting experts can conduct fraud investigations to discretely uncover the source of the problem and establish just how money has been taken. They can also outline other consequences, such as loss of earnings that might come out of a company’s reputation being damaged or customers being lost.
This can all be put down in a court-ready report to ensure the culprit is brought to justice and the financial ramifications are reversed.
For help in uncovering or prosecuting cases of fraud contact Frenkels Forensics for an expert and independent appraisal. We can help assist individuals, companies, lawyers, barristers and accountants in discovering the extent and method of the fraud.