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A former NHS IT chief has been sentenced to three-and-a-half years imprisonment after accepting more than £80,000 in bribes from an IT supplier for awarding him a contract with Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.
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The trust’s former informatics director Peter Lewis was given more than £80,000 by Richard Moxon, the director of an IT company, in return for awarding him a contract worth nearly £1m in its first year.
Guildford Crown Court sentenced Lewis to three-and-a-half years in jail, while Moxon was given a 14-month sentence.
The head of proactive crime for Surrey Police, detective superintendent Karen Mizzi, said Lewis had “sought to creedily divert money from the NHS into his own pockets”.
“While I am glad to see justice being served through his custodial sentence, my team is now focusing on recovering the money Lewis made from his crime, and returning it to the NHS,” she said.
Mizzi added that she hopes Moxon’s sentence will “act as a warning to other public sector supppliers, who may be tempted to go along with a fraud rather than reporting an approach to the relevant authorities at the earliest opportunity”.
The sentencing was the result of an investigation into Lewis’s activities as the trust’s director of informatics. In November 2016, he admitted to taking the bribe and Surrey Police is now seeking a confiscation order to seize any available assets he may have.
Stephen Rowland, specialist prosecutor from the Crown Prosecution Service specialist fraud division, said the “clear evidence resulted in both men pleading guilty”.
“Peter Lewis abused his position for his own financial gain. The prosecution evidence showed how Lewis approached Moxon for a bribe and had the money paid directly into the same bank account as his salary,” he said.