Hospital boss wrongly accused of fraud says bungled police investigation has wrecked his life

Readers may recall a recent post criticising both the NHS counter fraud service and police following the collapse of a fraud trial involving the former CEO of a private hospital group (click here).

The Telegraph (26 August 2009) picks up the story of how the former hospital CEOs life has been “wrecked” following the “bungled investigation” of a “malicious allegation.”

According to the Telegraph article, the former hospital CEO, “Mr Breeze, 54, found himself under arrest after a member of staff going through a disciplinary procedure accused him and two colleagues of defrauding the NHS out of £2.5 million at the privately-run Cawston Park psychiatric hospital near Norwich by overcharging for services.

Mr Breeze said there was no substance to the allegation but accused Norfolk police of setting out to “establish guilt rather than the truth, to construct a case rather than impartially investigate a suspected crime”.

Concerns have been raised in the past about the methods employed by, and the apparent lack of accountability of the NHS counter fraud services. Given the collapse of the fraud trial involving Mr Breeze, Healthcare Governance Review strongly advocates an independent review of the methods adopted by NHS counter fraud services, together with the conduct of the police involved in the investigation. The review should cover all cases since the establishment of the NHS counter fraud service that have not resulted in conviction and should include cases that have not gone to court.

Read the Telegraph article here.

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