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Thu February 27 2020

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Nigerian jailed for using fake skills card

2 Feb 17 A man who used a false name to work on UK construction sites has been sentenced to six months’ jail, following a Home Office and Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) investigation.

Gideon Emeka Okafor , a 23-year-old Nigerian national, was sentenced on 26th January at Sheffield Crown Court. Mr Okafor was arrested in November 2016 and charged with using a fake French national identification card to obtain a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card in August 2015. It is understood he then used the fake CSCS card to work on construction sites in London for over a year, in breach of UK immigration law.

Mr Okafor was caught following a Home Office investigation into his false documentation. It was supported with information from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), which administers the CSCS card scheme. CITB confirmed that a card had been issued in the name of ‘Patrice Beziat’, Mr Okafor’s alias.

CITB fraud manager Ian Sidney, a former police superintendent, said: “CITB is working closely with the Home Office to keep fraud out of construction. We hope that the sentencing of this young man sends a message loud and clear to fraudsters – there’s no place for you in the construction industry and you will be caught. The case also highlights the need for employers to be vigilant in checking workers’ documentation and to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity. Fraudsters on construction sites present a danger to themselves and others and we need to work together to stamp this activity out.”

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