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28 November 2014, 07:13 | Updated: 28 November 2014, 07:15
Three people, including a Norfolk police officer, have been charged with a total of 15 fraud offences.
PC Catriona Staff, aged 31, and Ben Staff, aged 33, who were arrested in February and Kevin Nixon, aged 50, who was arrested in March, were charged yesterday (27 November) following advice from CPS East of England.
PC Staff remains suspended from duty pending the outcome of criminal proceedings.
Ben Staff, from Lucas Court in Norwich, and Kevin Nixon, of Shortthorn Road in Stratton Strawless, are jointly charged with blackmail, relating to the development of a recycling centre outside Norwich and the transfer of a lease agreement on a piece of land.
Ben Staff is charged with eleven further offences, including fraudulent trading, fraud by false representation and false accounting in relation to a business namely Mr Trades Ltd, two further counts of false accounting, one in relation to a second company SES East Anglia, both Norfolk-based companies, three further counts of fraud by false representation and three counts of money laundering, totalling over £1,113,000.
Catriona Staff, also from Lucas Court in Norwich, is charged with three counts of money laundering totalling over £215,000.
All have been released on conditional bail to appear before Norwich Magistrates Court on Friday 12 December 2014.
A 30 year old man from Leeds, arrested in June, and a 28 year old man from Norwich, arrested in September, both on suspicion of a fraud related offence in relation to the same investigation, have been re-bailed until January pending further police enquiries.
A 60 year old woman from Norwich, arrested in February, and a 65 year old man from Norwich, arrested in June, both on suspicion of money laundering, have been released without charge and will face no further police action.
The case was investigated by the Eastern Region Specialist Operations Unit (ERSOU), which is a specialist unit with a remit for tackling serious and organised crime in the eastern region. It is made up of resources from Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire police.