NHS informatics director and ICT supplier jailed for fraud
A former NHS IT director at a Surrey NHS trust who accepted bribes in exchange for the award of IT contracts has been jailed for three and a half years.
Cash for contracts: ICT supplier and NHS IT director jailed for fraud - Photo credit: Fotolia
Peter Lewis, who was informatics director at the Royal Surrey County NHS Foundation Trust, admitted to receiving more than £74,000 from an IT company director in exchange for signing off the contract in November.
He was sentenced at Guildford Crown Court at the end of last week, alongside the company director who bribed him, Richard Moxon, who was sentenced to fourteen months.
The fraudulent activity, which took place between January and December 2011, saw Moxon awarded a contract worth £950,000 in the first year to provide software for records data at the hospital’s A&E department.
In return, Moxon made nine payments to Lewis, totalling £73,770, as well as a further payment of £7,200 to a stables that Lewis owed money to.
It was later found that 40% of the ICT product supplier by Moxon “did not meet the needs of the trust”.
And, although the trust did recover some of the lost money by using some elements of the software in a new system in August 2012, it declared a loss of £433,000 on the project in the 2011-12 financial year.
Alf Turner, deputy chief executive of Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said that Lewis “grossly abus[ed] the trust placed in him as a senior manager within the NHS” and defrauded the trust of more than £80,000.
The police are seeking a confiscation order to seize any of Lewis’ assets to try and recover that money and return it to the NHS.
Detective superintendent Karen Mizzi, head of proactive crime for Surrey Police, said she was glad to see “justice being service”.
She added: “I hope Richard Moxon’s sentence will act as a warning to other public sector suppliers, who may be tempted to go along with a fraud rather than reporting an approach to the relevant authorities at the earliest opportunity.”
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