SFO launches criminal investigation into funeral plan provider Safe Hands Plans
11 October, 2023 | News Releases
The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has opened a criminal investigation into a suspected fraud at Safe Hands Plans Limited and its parent company SHP Capital Holdings Limited after their funeral plan scheme collapsed last year.
Safe Hands Plans marketed pre-paid funeral plans, where customers paid instalments for plans priced up to £4,000, so that funds would be available towards the costs of funerals. Approximately 46,000 plan holders had paid toward funeral plans before the company collapsed.
Today, Nick Ephgrave QPM, Director of the SFO, sent notices to stockbrokers and financial institutions requesting information for its investigation. This follows similar requests made to UK banks and other potential witnesses issued last month. Non-compliance with these notices is a criminal offence.
Commenting on the SFO investigation, he said:
“Thousands of individuals from all over the UK have lost the peace and security they sought after being sold a product on the basis it would help reduce the burden on their loved ones upon their death.
“Today, we have taken another significant step in pursuing our criminal investigation into Safe Hands Plans.”
The SFO’s criminal investigation is pursuing various lines of enquiry and may result in a criminal prosecution, which the SFO would then conduct using its powers as a prosecuting authority.
The SFO is a specialist authority investigating and prosecuting serious economic crime. Members of the public who have been affected by the collapse of Safe Hands Plans are advised to continue liaising with the Safe Hands Plans Limited administrators “FRP Advisory”, who provide updates via a web page.