Four men, including ex-council leader Geoff Driver, are due to appear in court after they were summonsed to appear in connection with Lancashire Constabulary’s Operation Sheridan.
Lancashire Constabulary launched Operation Sheridan in 2013 following allegations of ‘financial irregularity’ made by Lancashire County Council.
It followed concerns being raised over the awarding of a £5m fleet maintenance contract to the now defunct One Connect joint venture between Lancashire County Council and BT.
On completion of the investigation, during which Lancashire Police worked closely with Merseyside Police, Lancashire County Council and Liverpool City Council, officers referred the matter to the Crown Prosecution Service who have authorised charges for four individuals.
The people summonsed today are: Dr David McElhinney, 62 of Ormskirk Road, Knowsley, who has been summonsed to face charges of misconduct in public office and procuring misconduct in public office.
Philip Halsall, 64 of Hesketh Road, Southport who has been summonsed to face charges of misconduct in public office and procuring misconduct in public office.
Gerald Fitzgerald, 60 of Dover Road, Birkdale, who has been summonsed to face charges of misconduct in public office and aiding and abetting misconduct in public office.
Geoff Driver, 77 of Hoylake Close, Preston, who has been summonsed to face a charge of Taking Revenge under the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act.
As well as Mr Driver who retired in May 2021, former Lancashire County Council chief executives Ged Fitzgerald and Phil Halsall and former One Connect chief executive David McElhinney are due to appear at Manchester Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday October 12.
All four men have been served with postal requisition orders today (Tuesday, August 23rd) and are due to appear at Manchester Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, October 12th 2022.
Four other men aged 62, 64, 66 and 68 were written to earlier this year and told they would face no further action.
Lancashire Police would like to remind all concerned that criminal proceedings against these defendants are active and that they have a right to a fair trial.
It is extremely important there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.