Canadian Security Magazine

Police officers recognized with Canadian banks’ law enforcement award

By Canadian Security   

News Public Sector

The Canadian Bankers Association has awarded its 2012 Canadian Banks’ Law Enforcement Award (CBLEA) to two police officers.

Detective Brian Hollingsworth was awarded the CBLEA in recognition of his role as the primary investigator in a string of aggressive and violent, “take-over style” bank robberies.

From January to March 2011, three financial institutions in the Calgary area were held up by a gang of armed and dangerous bank robbers. There was a lull in activity until four more financial institutions in Calgary were held up in August and September of the same year. Detective Hollingsworth was assigned as the primary investigator in the case. Hollingsworth’s breakthrough came from DNA found in a stolen car used in one of the robberies. Armed with the identity of one suspect, Hollingsworth and his team were able to apprehend the suspects.

Provincial Constable Derek Wickett – Ontario Provincial Police, Bracebridge Detachment was awarded the CBLEA in recognition of his role in uncovering a sophisticated cheque fraud scheme and apprehending the criminals involved.

In September 2011, a call came into the Bracebridge Detachment of the OPP, reporting a suspicious cheque that was deposited for a large sum of money. Constable Derek Wickett responded to the initial call: a woman was depositing a cheque and claimed to be starting a new business, having all the paper work and proper documents. The bank’s security team quickly determined that the cheque was stolen, the business was fictitious and the woman was using false identification and papers. In total, five banks in the area reported similar incidents.

Despite the fact that no other specialized police investigators were available to assist in the case, Constable Wickett was able to quickly determine that all five bank frauds were committed by the same woman. The break in the case came when a bank manager called to say the woman had set up an appointment to open an account. Wickett apprehended the woman as she was leaving the bank.

Since 1972, the Canadian Bankers Association has honoured 223 Canadian police officers. The Award is presented annually at a formal ceremony at the annual conference of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police.

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