Abellio Chief Boss Fired for Fraud

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by Simon11, 5 Jun 2015.

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  1. Simon11

    Simon11 Member Jobs & Careers Assistant

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    Could this mean them pulling out the GA franchise bidding process and could anything happen to their existing franchises?

    http://www.ns.nl/over-ns/nieuwscentrum/persberichten#huges-per-direct-uit-functie-bij-ns

    Google (very poor) translation below:
     
    Last edited: 5 Jun 2015
  2. Wivenswold

    Wivenswold Member

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    Interesting, wonder if anything will be done about AGA defrauding taxpayers by funnelling fares through their Luxembourg subsidiary?
     
  3. route:oxford

    route:oxford Established Member

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    Defrauding, or perfectly legal accounting?

    I wonder what The Sturgeon & Co will have to say about this...
     
  4. HowardGWR

    HowardGWR Established Member

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    In the above article, the 'drivers' aren't drivers. it's a faulty translation of 'bestuurders' which can mean 'drivers' but also means 'managers' or 'directors', which is of course is what is meant in this case.
     
  5. Arctic Troll

    Arctic Troll Established Member

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    The privatised rail industry run by a fraudster?

    *falls off chair in shock*
     
  6. LNW-GW Joint

    LNW-GW Joint Established Member

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  7. Flamingo

    Flamingo Established Member

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    There you go, fixed that for you...
     
  8. Quakkerillo

    Quakkerillo Member

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    Problem is that the Dutch rail network is divided in two groups:
    1) Core network, ran by the NS (Dutch railways)
    2) Secondary lines, ran by various franchises (Connexxion, Arriva, Veolia, and the NS-owned Syntus/Abellio).

    The whole network is owned and maintained by ProRail (who franchise areas/lines for maintenance), while all stations are owned and maintained by the NS. Franchises have to pay NS money every year for the services.

    The NS also tries to win the franchises for rail, which they did for Alphen a/d Rijn - Gouda, and tried in Limburg.
    Issue here is that some Veolia employee/manager (Veolia currently runs the Limburg franchise) gave info to Abellio, and was hired by Abellio. This was against the rules, and saw Abellio retreat from the franchise after already having won it.

    Furthermore, it now surfaced that the other bidders' information, which had been sent to the NS headquarters, asking for information about costs, rules, etc. about the use of the NS stations was relayed by the board of directors to Abellio, which is also against the rules.

    So two different things went wrong at the same time. Hiring someone who has 'secret' info, and the NS directors handing 'secret' info to its daughter company.

    As this is a Dutch-only case, with NS owning the stations, and therefor having special info, I doubt it'll influence the UK franchises. Here, they have no secret information, and are just another company trying to get some stuff.
     
  9. dk1

    dk1 Established Member

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    Well I never :lol::lol::lol:
     
  10. me123

    me123 Established Member

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    BBC news picked up on the story.

    Scotrail operator Abellio hit by scandal

     
  11. JaJaWa

    JaJaWa Established Member

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    Could those with a hatred of Abellio on Twitter have been on to something... :roll:
     
  12. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    It's interesting given that NS is such a small network it might as well be one UK TOC. I wonder does this practice of microfranchising individual lines actually improve efficiency or service, or might they as well just create a "NS plc" or indeed franchise the whole thing to one operator?
     
  13. XC90

    XC90 Member

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    Well well!

    That is a surprise.
     
  14. chubs

    chubs Member

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    Qbuzz is a bus operator, a subsidiary of NS.

    Are they even talking about trains here or the local bus franchise?
     
  15. Quakkerillo

    Quakkerillo Member

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    The Limburg franchise contains all bus services in the province, as well as local trains Nijmegen-Venlo-Roermond, Roermond-Maastricht Randwyck, Maastricht Randwyck-Heelen-Kerkrade, and Sittard-Heerlen.

    Some franchises are indeed very small. Dordrecht-Geldermalsen in 12-stops, mostly single-line diesel-operated. Amersfoort-Ede Wageningen is 8 stops, diesel-operated. Zutphen-Hengelo-Bad Bentheim (D) is only 7 stops.

    The idea was that the main core network is of such vital importance, that it's best kept in state hands, and is "directly awarded". To make sure the smaller lines aren't neglected, these are being franchised, in the hope that companies will invest more here. Because for the national franchise, the importance of frequent services in Groningen is much less important than maintaining the massive service levels around the Randstad.
    However, the idea is showing many signs of failure.
     
  16. zuriblue

    zuriblue Member

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    The bus franchise in Limburg.

    A good explanation here

    http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/...resigns-in-wake-of-qbuzz-bidding-scandal.html

     
  17. JaJaWa

    JaJaWa Established Member

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    There's another issue mentioned on some of them about Abellio staff leaking the specs for new train orders to Bombardier.
     
  18. chubs

    chubs Member

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    I thought it was the bus services but didn't realise it involved some local rail as well.

    I wonder if anything will come to light about the recent QBuzz takeover of GVU's routes in Utrecht after QBuzz won that franchise.
     
  19. Olaf

    Olaf Member

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    The main problem not highlighted so far, is that this case illustrates one of the problems of allowing public sector bodies to compete against private sector businesses for the same business while the former has access to privileged resources and information.
     
  20. Quakkerillo

    Quakkerillo Member

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    Not only that, the public body in this case has to get information from the competition (their plans), to be able to tell them if it's feasible, and what it'd cost.
    The bosses who have to get this info, and process it, are the same who head the daughter company who tries to get the franchise.
    So their left side of the brain is not allowed to know what the right side knows. Of course that's going to go wrong at some point.
     
  21. 185

    185 Established Member

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    Quite surprised British-based Jeff Hoogesteger has been kicked out, does make you wonder what's been going on behind the scenes. Annoying, as unusually for someone so high up, I didn't mind Jeff, he was a rarity amongst some extremely drab people.
     
  22. XC90

    XC90 Member

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    I wonder if he will be staying in Scotland or heading back to Holland. He announced he was moving to Edinburgh when abellio won the scotrail franchise.
     
  23. Class 170101

    Class 170101 Established Member

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    Well surprise Surprise the RMT have had their say
    https://www.rmt.org.uk/news/rmt-demands-public-inquiry-into-abellio/

     
  24. Olaf

    Olaf Member

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  25. HH

    HH Established Member

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    Seems highly unlikely. The only trains Abellio have bought were from Hitachi.

    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Theoretically we have the same position when the incumbent bids for a franchise. The bidding team is supposed to be at arms length from the operating TOC, e.g. the DfT assured bidders on TSGN that FirstGroup were not in a privileged position regarding the new Rolling Stock agreement (TRSP) because they had no access to the information (I mean FCC wouldn't tell them now, would they?)!

    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Jeff was based in Holland when this went down. In any case he was in charge of Abellio at the time. If he didn't know what was going on then he damn well should have.

    TBH I liked Jeff, but he wasn't the brightest star in the sky.

    I hear that not only are RMT suggesting that they need looking into, but National Express are demanding "a recount" in Scotland as well. UK Abellio staff are in a state of shock at the moment.

    I wonder whether the decision to bid for EA with Stagecoach was driven by this?
     
    Last edited: 15 Jun 2015
  26. HilversumNS

    HilversumNS Member

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    On the link posted by the OP http://www.ns.nl/over-ns/nieuwscentrum/persberichten#huges-per-direct-uit-functie-bij-ns there is another press release with the headline "Consultant verkocht vertrouwelijke NS-informatie aan Bombardier" which translates to "Consultant sold confidential NS information to Bombardier"

    The 1st paragraph reads:
    NS has announced that an investigation has established that an external consultant, in mid 2012, provided confidential information to an employee of Bombardier. Also, it was established that this consultant received €7000 for this. NS has strict standards regarding integrity. The observed practices are unacceptably for NS and in flagrant violation of its principles.

    I just did a quick literal translation, rather than polishing it into everyday English, but you will get the gist.

    I can translate the rest if needed.
     
    Last edited: 15 Jun 2015
  27. HH

    HH Established Member

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    Ah that's NS. And it was an external consultant. In 2012. Doesn't seem to be a connection that I can see; looks more like simple coincidence.

    Of course you could argue that it is indication of corruption in Holland, or Dutch railways in particular, but having met a number of Dutch railwaymen, I wouldn't give it much credence.
     
  28. Harlan Cage

    Harlan Cage Member

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    Come back first, but nothing is forgiven:lol:

    HC
     
  29. Class 170101

    Class 170101 Established Member

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    But they will be looking at new trains for their Northern Franchise yet to be purchased. Doubtless in a similar vein new trains will be part of the Greater Anglia ITT as well, if recent DfT form is anything to go by.
     
  30. HH

    HH Established Member

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    Yes, but that's for the future and this was 2012. But irrelevant anyway as it turns out it wasn't Abellio at all. Or even NS. They were sinned against rather than sinners in that instance.

    With regard to the one that was Abellio, I'd really like to know what happened, because NS are very risk averse and what they did was very risky. I suspect it might have been a case of trying to cover up after the event rather than condoning it in the first place. Still an error of judgement, but one that would make more sense given the sort of politics in a publicly owned company.
     
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