Fraud: Coronavirus

(asked on 20th April 2020) - View Source

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, whether his Department has plans to increase sentences for people convicted of fraudulent activity that is related to the covid-19 outbreak.


Answered by
Chris Philp Portrait
Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
This question was answered on 28th April 2020

The Government is committed to ensuring a robust response to those who exploit the covid-19 outbreak through criminal means.

Sentencing in individual cases is a matter for our independent courts. Fraud is a serious offence and Parliament, in setting a maximum penalty of 10 years’ custody, has provided the courts with the full range of sentencing powers to deal effectively with offenders.

If a victim is particularly vulnerable for any reason (this applies regardless of the Covid context) then the sentencing guidelines do provide an aggravating factor for the victim’s vulnerability. This means a more severe penalty could be imposed than would have been the case absent the aggravating factor (subject always to the maximum penalty for the offence).

The Government continues to work alongside the CPS to provide a multi-agency response to criminality associated with covid-19. A joint interim charging protocol has been agreed between the police and CPS which gives the highest priority to custody cases and all covid-19 related cases, including related fraud offences.

This content was generated for your convenience by Parallel Parliament and does not form part of the official record.
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16/03/2021 - Commons Chamber

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09/06/2020 - Commons Chamber

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2: reported during the covid-19 outbreak. How many conversations have he and the Home Secretary had about suspending - Speech Link
3: Gentleman will be glad to know that the Home Secretary and I discuss many issues relating to domestic - Speech Link

3. Oral Answers to Questions
08/12/2020 - Commons Chamber

1: needs to know when the Ministry of Justice will finalise its plans. Can my hon. and learned Friend share - Speech Link
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4. Oral Answers to Questions
16/09/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: very able replacement. I welcome the new Secretary of State, who I know must have the greatest interest - Speech Link
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3: discussions has the Department had in preparation for the final report with the Department for Business, Energy - Speech Link

5. Oral Answers to Questions
04/02/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: with a double whammy of an industry devastated by covid and the loss of an entire continent as a venue. - Speech Link
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