£1billion corruption investigation tops the bill at detectives’ awards

12 October 2017

PFNDF award winners 2017

The Police Federation’s National Detectives’ Forum (PFNDF) handed out awards for Detective Investigation of the Year; Services to Detectives; the technology-based Smarter Detective; and the New Trainee Detective of the Year at a ceremony in Northampton on Thursday.

A team of Thames Valley detectives won the Detective Investigation of the Year award for tracking down an organised crime group, which had profited in the region of £1billion from mass corruption, blackmail, conspiracy to defraud, fraudulent trading and money laundering.

The investigation uncovered how the gang had targeted a significant number of small businesses across the UK with victims losing their family businesses and homes as a result.

The team interviewed 424 people, gathered over 1,000 statements and more than 3,000 exhibits.  Their expertise and resilience was tested further with the added complication of linking money and suspects across the UK, Europe and America.  But their hard work and tenacity paid off, with six out of the seven defendants being found guilty and receiving sentences totalling 96 years.

This year’s runner-up for the Detective Investigation award was DI Suzanne Baker from West Midlands Police for her work on the investigation into the Paris and Brussels terror attacks.

Third place went to a team of detectives from Northamptonshire Police for their work on a historical sex crime review, Operation Zilch.

Greater Manchester Police T/Detective Chief Inspector Andrew Cunliffe and Detective Inspector Steven Nelson from Essex Police jointly won the national Services to Detectives Award.

T/DCI Cunliffe, who dealt with the aftermath of the Manchester Arena bombing, was honoured for his drive and commitment in recognising potential detectives and encouraging professional development.

DI Steven Nelson was recognised for his work with forces to improve responses and victim support in child abuse cases.

T/DCI Julie Henderson and Acting Sergeant Jason Hall from the Metropolitan Police scooped the Smarter Detective Award for their innovative work in developing new technology to improve the forensic sampling of footwear.  ‘Tread Finder’ has improved crime detection rates and reduced reoffending.

Second place in this category was awarded to DC Steven Tisseyre from Bedfordshire Police for his work on identifying suspects using drone technology to drop contraband in prison grounds.

Third place went to Acting DS Duncan Montague and DI Luke Whinnett from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Operation Tropic, for their contribution to tackling Human Trafficking.

Detective Constable Emma Kunne from Leicestershire Police won the New Trainee Detective of the Year Award for making an impact early on in her career.  In particular, she was recognised for her work in the immediate aftermath of a murder within a community where tensions were high, acting as the family liaison of the deceased.

Working long hours to help the family, she managed to assist with completion of the remand file and was part of the professional handover to the murder investigation team.

Every year the PFNDF presents its own award for Outstanding Contribution, with recognition given this year to Royston Martis of Martis Media, for his work within policing and support of the PFNDF.”

Karen Stephens, secretary of the Police Federation National Detectives’ Forum, said: “Detective officers and the work they do are deserving of recognition and the Police Federation Detectives’ Forum is proud to provide the platform to showcase some of their incredible work.

“As in previous years, we received some truly astounding nominations - all demonstrating tenacity, perseverance and dedication to investigating some of the worst crimes imaginable.

“Congratulations to all our nominees and winners – they are a credit to the service and we are grateful for the work they do.”