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Suspect strategy

Authorised Professional Practice

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This page is from APP, the official source of professional practice for policing.

First published
Written by College of Policing
Major investigation and public protection
4 mins read

The global nature of modern slavery and its links with financial crime means that identifying suspects may require strategies that are additional to those used in a standard major investigation. These include:

  • considering that the suspect could also be a victim and be subject to threats or coercion
  • conducting research into the background of the suspect including religion, ethnicity, culture and regional identity, if relevant
  • contacting other police forces or researching databases for potential intelligence
  • identifying a full financial asset history including seizing any documents, vehicle details (for example number plates), bank cards, diaries, worksheets, rotas and payslips in the suspect’s possession, and any documents evidencing land ownership
  • checking whether the suspect owns other businesses and undertaking relevant research to identify potential links to other premises where there may be additional victims or evidence of criminality, for example, money laundering
  • taking wet fingerprints to enhance forensic opportunities in addition to LiveScan fingerprints
  • considering placing the suspect on the Home Office’s Warnings Index database
  • being aware when considering granting bail that the suspect may have alternative premises or businesses
  • assessing the risk to the victim(s) and implementing suitable control measures if a suspect is released on bail. For example, bail conditions, use of civil orders

All appropriate steps should be considered to safeguard victims prior to any suspect being released from custody. This includes complying with the Common Law Police Disclosure scheme, which ensures that where there is a public protection risk, the police will pass information to any relevant employer or regulatory body to allow them to act swiftly to mitigate any danger.

See intelligence opportunities for information on sources that can help an investigation. These should be pursued.

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