BREAKING: Eastbourne firm receives £2.2 million penalty

Smith & Ouzman, printers in Brampton Road Hampden Park Eastbourne. February 21st 2013 E08189P ENGSUS00120130221121838
Smith & Ouzman, printers in Brampton Road Hampden Park Eastbourne. February 21st 2013 E08189P ENGSUS00120130221121838
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An Eastbourne printing company yesterday (Friday) received a £2.2million penalty for making corrupt payments to public officials for business contracts in Kenya and Mauritania.

Smith & Ouzman, security and financial printers, was given the penalty at a hearing before Mr Recorder Mitchell QC at Southwark Crown Court.

Smith & Ouzman Ltd and two employees were convicted in December 2014 as a result of a Serious Fraud Office investigation into corrupt payments made for the award of business contracts to the company.

The sales and marketing director of the firm, Nicholas Charles Smith, 43, of Cavendish Avenue, and his father Christopher John Smith, 71, the chairman of the company, both received jail sentences.

The firm said that yesterday’s hearing brought the case to a close.

Company chairman Phil Ouzman said, The company will have to pay the penalty over the next five years.

“The extent of the company’s co-operation with the Serious Fraud Office was acknowledged in court on a number of occasions.”

The Brampton Road based firm, which employs 80 staff, said is it was now conducting a review of its business while it “continues to focus on providing quality products and outstanding service to its customers”.

Smith & Ouzman is independently owned and has been established in Eastbourne since 1955, whilst its history in the printing industry dates back to 1845.

Mr Ouzman said, “We have taken this matter very seriously and learned many lessons during this difficult time.

“We have demonstrated our commitment, controls and ethos to new and existing customers and are grateful to all of them for continuing to trust in us.

“The company has a substantial financial penalty to pay. Although this is a significant amount of money, the company is resilient and, with the help of our dedicated employees, we will continue to deliver the highest level of secure, innovative products and services.”

For details of the court case click {http://www.eastbourneherald.co.uk/news/local/breaking-news-jail-sentences-for-smith-ouzman-pair-1-6577279\here}

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