With the Probation Review well underway into the omnishambles created by Chris Grayling's TR, maybe it's time to reflect on exactly what went on during the bidding process and the 'dodgy' prospectus the successful contractors say they were sold. For instance, what ever happened to this, as reported in an article from 13th March 2016 in the Daily Mail:-
Ministry of Justice orders an urgent probe into former civil servants helping private firms to win multi-million-pound contracts
The Ministry of Justice has started an urgent inquiry after The Mail on Sunday uncovered evidence that ex-civil servants were boasting of Government connections while working for private firms to secure multi-million-pound contracts in Britain and abroad.
This newspaper found several senior MoJ officials recently left Whitehall to take up jobs with a consultancy. In the months before they departed, the consultancy’s UK branch had helped secure contracts worth more than £600 million for a controversial US firm to run probation services across swathes of the South East, and a Northamptonshire young offenders’ unit.
They had worked for the commercial arm of the MoJ – shut down last year after disclosures it was to be paid £6 million to ‘reform’ the prison system in Saudi Arabia. This operation, Just Solutions International, closed in September. Its former chief Tony Challinor, now a director of consultancy TDPi, boasts of using experience and knowledge gained in government in the private sector.
His profile on business networking site LinkedIn says he had led a Ministry of Justice team to ‘scope and develop solutions’ for governments and criminal justice agencies around the world, adding: ‘I am very pleased to be able to continue to develop and deliver this work through TDPi.’
Former civil servants must not ‘exploit privileged access to contacts in Government or sensitive information’ gained in their duties. If a job risks breaching these rules, it must be approved by a Whitehall committee.
Mr Challinor is one of several ex-mandarins at TDPi to whom the checks were apparently not properly applied. The firm’s website mentions Sibylle Batten, who led the MoJ’s International and Market Development Unit, and ‘has extensive experience in business and partnership development’.
Sources told The Mail on Sunday that TDPi is looking at contracts in Nigeria, Afghanistan and Somalia, where it hopes to ‘rehabilitate’ pirates.
Its director Rebecca Grattan is also chief operating officer of MTCnovo, the British branch of prisons firm MTC. Its successful bids to run probation services in London and Thames Valley and the Rainsbrook youth detention centre were organised by TDPi’s sister company. By 2021, the income from these will top £600 million.
In the US, MTC has been beset by scandal. Last year a Texas immigration detention centre it ran was destroyed when prisoners rioted. The state of Mississippi is facing class-action lawsuits from prisoners in MTC-run jails who allege they endured violence and were denied healthcare.
Criminal justice expert Harry Fletcher branded it ‘outrageous’ that a firm with such a record was to run Rainsbrook. MTCnovo said it plans to bid for further UK contracts.
The Ministry of Justice said it had started ‘an immediate investigation with support from the Cabinet Office’ as a result of the findings.
Asked about the probe, Mrs Grattan said: ‘Both Tony Challinor and Sibylle Batten have followed the recommended procedures. Neither individual is working in any capacity for MTCnovo nor has done so in the past.’ Mr Challinor and Ms Batten did not respond to requests for comment.
This article from the Guardian:-
Ministry of Justice officials 'helped private firms win government contracts'
Ministers have ordered an immediate inquiry into allegations that former senior civil servants from the Ministry of Justice have used their Whitehall knowledge and contacts to help private companies secure government contracts worth millions.
The inquiry follows a Mail on Sunday investigation which questioned the role of a director of a consultancy, TDPi, whom they named as Tony Challinor. Challinor is the former chief executive of the MoJ’s commercial arm, Just Solutions International, which was shut down last year in a row over a Saudi prisons contract.
The prisons minister, Andrew Selous, said the reported allegations involved claims that former MoJ employees had behaved improperly and that knowledge they may have acquired while working for the department had been used to gain a competitive advantage.
“We take all allegations of impropriety extremely seriously,” said Selous, adding that an immediate investigation had been launched with Cabinet Office support.
“The rules around former civil servants taking up employment in the private sector are made very clear when they leave. Under no circumstance should they exploit privileged access to government contracts or sensitive information which could be used to influence the outcome of commercial competitions,” he said.
The Mail on Sunday said that Challinor was one of several senior MoJ officials who had recently left Whitehall to take up jobs with TDPi. In the months before they left their Whitehall jobs, TDPi’s UK branch had helped secure contracts that would be worth more than £600m by 2020 for a US company, MTCnovo, to run probation services in London and the Thames Valley as well as Rainsbrook secure training centre in Northamptonshire.
Challinor, who was also head of commercial development for the prisons and probation service, says in his Linkedin profile: “After a brief period of retirement from the UK civil service I am leading a new company building on the work I previously delivered.” He left his role as head of commercial development at the national offender management service in December after more than four years in the post.
Challinor goes on in his profile to highlight his experience in creating a dedicated MoJ team to develop solutions for governments and criminal justice agencies around the world and says he hopes to develop this work through the TDPi consultancy. The paper also named a second former MoJ official who had a senior role in the department’s international and market development unit.
Selous added in a written ministerial statement to MPs that the MoJ had improved its commercial capability in the last six months by doubling the senior commercial experts monitoring work with the private sector.
A spokeswoman for TDPi told the Mail on Sunday that Challinor had followed the recommended procedures and had never worked for MTC Novo. Challinor declined to comment.
This article from CivilServiceWorld
Ministry of Justice launches probe into former commercial staff
The Ministry of Justice has begun an investigation into claims that a number of its former commercial staff have emphasised their links to government while seeking private sector work.
The Mail on Sunday reported at the weekend that several senior MoJ officials who had been part of the now-disbanded Just Solutions International team – set up to sell British criminal justice advice to governments around the world, including Saudi Arabia – are now working for a private consultancy called TDPi.
The consultancy's website promises "a fresh approach to solution development in international justice and correctional services", and its team includes director Tony Challinor, who stepped down as head of commercial development for the National Offender Management Service (NOMS) in December.
In a statement to MPs published on Monday, justice minister Andrew Selous said: "Yesterday the press reported allegations that former employees of the Ministry of Justice have behaved improperly and that knowledge they may have acquired while working for the department has been used to gain a competitive advantage.
"We take all allegations of impropriety extremely seriously. We have launched an immediate investigation to ascertain the facts, which the Cabinet Office's Proprietary and Ethics team will support."
Under rules governing post-Whitehall business appointments, senior civil servants "are expected to refrain from drawing on any privileged information which was available to them when in office", with appointments subject to clearance by the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments.
Selous added: "The rules around former civil servants taking up employment in the private sector are made very clear when they leave. Under no circumstance should they exploit privileged access to government contracts or sensitive information which could be used to influence the outcome of commercial competitions."
Selous said the Ministry of Justice had, "over the last six months", taken steps to improve its commercial capability, "more than doubling the senior commercial experts monitoring work with the private sector". But there was "still more to do", he added, and promised to update MPs with the findings of the joint investigation once it had been completed.