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JJB Sports (C Ronnie, D Ball, D Barrington)

On 4 April 2012, Christopher Ronnie and David Ball appeared before Westminster Magistrates’ Court in response to a summons in connection with an alleged £1 million fraud relating to contracts entered into by JJB Sports plc (JJB) in 2008. This followed investigations carried out by the Serious Fraud Office following a referral by the Office of Fair Trading.

Christopher Ronnie was the Chief Executive of JJB between August 2007 and March 2009. David Ball is an accountant and joint beneficial owner of Fashion & Sport Limited, a supplier to JJB. David Barrington was also a joint beneficial owner of Fashion & Sport Limited and was charged in August 2013 alongside business partner David Ball. Please see below for the defendants and the corresponding charges.

Christopher Ronnie, was convicted alongside David Ball and David Barrington on the 20 November 2014 at Southwark Crown Court. This led to prison sentences totalling 4 years for Christopher Ronnie and 18 months each for David Ball and David Barrington. The judgement was handed down on 15 December 2014 at Southwark Crown Court. See below for a full breakdown of convictions and sentences. The total amount of money fraudulently obtained by Mr Ronnie was approximately £1 million.

Outcome of criminal case

Christopher Ronnie: Convicted – 20 November 2014

Three offences of fraud by failing to disclose information, contrary to S1(1) and 3 of the Fraud Act 2006, in relation to his failure to disclose interests in contracts entered into by JJB with Fashion and Sport Ltd;

Two offences of furnishing false information, contrary to S17(1)(b) of the Theft Act 1968.

It was agreed that the two money laundering offences would not be considered by the jury.

David Ball: Convicted – 20 November 2014

Two offences of attempting to pervert the course of justice, contrary to the common law, in relation to attempts to destroy digital material and to mislead the SFO when purporting to comply with notices served under S2 of the Criminal Justice Act 1987.

Mr Ball was acquitted of two offences of furnishing false information, contrary to S17(1)(b) of the Theft Act 1968. The jury were unable to agree in relation to a third count of furnishing false information, contrary to S17(1)(b) of the Theft Act 1968.

David Barrington: Convicted – 20 November 2014

Two offences of attempting to pervert the course of justice, contrary to the common law, in relation to attempts to destroy digital material and to mislead the SFO when purporting to comply with notices served under S2 of the Criminal Justice Act 1987.

Sentencing

Christopher Ronnie: Sentenced – 15 December 2014

4 years in prison for each of the three offences of fraud, to run concurrently.

1 year in prison for each of the two offences of furnishing false information, to also run concurrently.

David Ball: Sentenced – 15 December 2014

18 months for each of the two offences of attempting to pervert the course of justice, to run concurrently.

David Barrington: Sentenced – 15 December 2014

18 months for each of the two offences of attempting to pervert the course of justice, to run concurrently.

Disqualification of directors

Christopher Ronnie was disqualified from being a director of a company for 8 years.

Confiscation

The Judge ordered David Ball and David Barrington to pay £40k costs each within 12 months.

Christopher Ronnie was ordered, at a hearing on 17 December 2015 at Southwark Crown Court, to pay a confiscation order of £632,662.31 within three months or serve a prison sentence of five years. In March 2016, Mr Ronnie was granted by a judge an extension of three months to pay part of this order. Mr Ronnie was then granted a further extension which brought the deadline to pay his confiscation order to 17 June 2016.

On 31 October 2016, Christopher Ronnie fully satisfied his confiscation order of £534,198.22, reduced by consent from £632,662.3.

Page published on 2 Dec 2014 | Page modified on 4 Apr 2017