Former principal of flagship Bradford free school charged with fraud

Richard Vaughan

The founder and former principal of a flagship free school in Bradford has been charged with fraud and other offences.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said Sajid Hussain Raza had been charged with offences that related to his involvement with the Kings Science Academy.

Mr Raza was arrested last year following an investigation into the school, which was visited by prime minister David Cameron in 2012.

The CPS said it had authorised West Yorkshire Police to charge him 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.

Julian Briggs, reviewing lawyer at CPS Yorkshire and Humberside's complex casework unit, 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 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. He will first appear at Leeds Magistrates' Court shortly."

The academy was one of the first free schools to open in September 2011. It was set up by Mr Raza and praised by Mr Cameron on his visit in March 2012.

West Yorkshire Police said Mr Raza, 42, had been released on bail and would appear at Leeds Magistrates' Court on a date yet to be fixed.

The force said the charges related to financial matters at the school between April and August 2011.

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Richard Vaughan

Richard has been writing about politics, policy and technology in education for nearly five years after joining TES in 2008. He joined TES from the building press having been a reporter and then later news editor at the Architects’ Journal. Before then he studied at Cardiff University’s school of journalism. Richard can be found tweeting at @richardvaughan1

Find me on Twitter @RichardVaughan1

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