We are the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), an independent government department that investigates and prosecutes serious or complex fraud, and corruption. We are part of the UK criminal justice system with jurisdiction in England, Wales and Northern Ireland but not in Scotland, the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands.
Our expert forensic accountants and professional investigators and lawyers investigate and prosecute the most serious or complex instances of fraud and corruption.
We use our special legislative powers to obtain the evidence needed to build successful cases and bring criminals to justice and so help maintain confidence in the UK's business and financial institutions.
Using the lessons we learn from the cases we investigate, we try to prevent extensive, deliberate criminal deception which could threaten the public further.
The Director of the SFO is appointed by and accountable to the Attorney General (Mr Jeremy Wright MP) who is responsible to Parliament for the SFO and the other Law Officers' Departments:
- Crown Prosecution Service
- Treasury Solicitor's Office
- the Department of the Director of Public Prosecutions for Northern Ireland
- HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate.
In July 2009 the then Attorney General (Baroness Scotland) published a protocol which set out clearly the relationship of the Attorney General with the prosecuting authorities she superintended. This was produced in collaboration with the directors of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), and the Revenue and the then Customs Prosecutions Office (RCPO).
We are part of a network of government agencies and other organisations which work to combat fraud and corruption. For more information on how we fit into the counter-fraud and corruption network, visit External relations and What we do and who we work with.