Founder of free school hailed by David Cameron charged with string of fraud offences

The former principal of one of the country’s first free schools has been charged with a number of fraud offences.

Sajid Raza, founder of the Kings Science Academy in Bradford, has been charged with three offences of fraud by abuse of position, three offences of false accounting, two offences of obtaining a money transfer by deception, and one offence of fraud by false representation.

As reported by the Yorkshire Post, it follows a police probe into alleged financial irregularities at the school, which opened in 2011.

Julian Briggs, reviewing lawyer, complex casework unit, CPS Yorkshire and Humberside, said: “The Crown Prosecution Service has been working closely with West Yorkshire Police in connection with this case.

“Having carefully considered all of the evidence presented to us, we have concluded that there is sufficient evidence to charge Sajid Hussain Raza (Principal) with a range of offences relating to his involvement with the Kings Science Academy, Bradford, and that it is in the public interest to do so.

“Accordingly I have today authorised West Yorkshire Police to charge Sajid Hussain Raza with three offences of fraud by abuse of position, three offences of false accounting, two offences of obtaining a money transfer by deception, and one offence of fraud by false representation.  He will first appear at Leeds Magistrates’ Court shortly.

“This defendant has now been charged with serious criminal offences and has the right to a fair trial. It is extremely important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”

Mr Raza was arrested in January last year and later dismissed from the school. Questions regarding management of the academy were then raised in Parliament.

Prime Minister David Cameron, during a visit to the school in its first year, said he was “very impressed”.

The school is now known as Dixons Kings after joining the Dixons Academy chain.