Wales

Swansea University: Police search addresses in bribery probe

Swansea University Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The search warrants were executed after Swansea University complained to the Serious Fraud Office

Police have searched a number of addresses as part of an investigation into alleged bribery involving a Welsh university.

Officers from Tarian, the regional organised crime unit for south Wales, executed eight searches in Swansea, Carmarthenshire and Kent.

The search warrants were executed after Swansea University complained to the Serious Fraud Office in late 2018.

Swansea University said it continued to co-operate with police.

No arrests have been made but police seized a number of items, including documents and electronic equipment, South Wales Police said.

Four of the premises searched were in the South Wales Police force area, three were in Dyfed-Powys and one was in Kent, with officers from each police force involved in the searches.

'Complex investigation'

"The investigation is complex and remains ongoing," police added.

In an email to staff on Wednesday morning, Andrew Rhodes, the university's chief operating officer, sought to reassure employees the searches were "expected" and "not as a result of recent or new developments".

He added: "I can completely understand this is a significant development today, but it is genuinely not something I feel you need to be unduly worried about."

In a separate statement, the university said: "We continue to co-operate with the authorities in relation to this matter."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Prof Richard B Davies had been vice-chancellor of Swansea University since 2003

Last week, the university sacked its vice-chancellor and the dean of the school of management for gross misconduct.

Prof Richard B Davies and Prof Marc Clement were suspended along with two others in November last year, prompting an internal investigation and disciplinary process.

They have denied any wrongdoing and have said they will appeal against the sackings. The disciplinary process is still ongoing for a third member of staff.

Image caption Prof Clement also denies any wrongdoing and previously said the investigation had affected his health

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