Lycamobile denies any wrongdoing over “cash dumping” allegations


MVNO labels investigation from BuzzFeed as a “non story” and had reported the online firm to the police for “taking private and confidential” documents from its office

LycaMobile has issued a statement denying any wrongdoing after the MVNO’s financial practices came under scrutiny following a five-month investigation by BuzzFeed News.

The findings of the investigation into the O2 MVNO, published throughout this week, showed Lycamobile employees had deposited rucksacks carrying “hundreds of thousands of pounds” worth of cash at Post Offices across London several times a week, prompting former director of public prosecutions Lord MacDonald to call the practices “deeply suspicious”. 

Lycamobile said it has consulted lawyers over the claims, and said it has reported the news site to the police for allegedly taking a “private and confidential document from our office.”

DSC08669The statement from Lycamobile, issued this morning (October 9) read: “We have waited for BuzzFeed to publish the entirety of its investigation before responding, so we could do so in full possession of the facts.

“We deny all allegations and inferences of wrongdoing over the preceding few days and will defend such allegations robustly. We have asked our external lawyers to review the articles and consider all legal options against BuzzFeed.”

Heightened security risk

The ethnic MVNO, which recently resigned its multi-year wholesale agreement with O2, was found to be dropping off bags of money twice a day at various locations in the capital, despite having large sums collected from its Beckton depot by security firm G4S.

In its statement, Lycamobile attacked BuzzFeed for publishing a video showing its staff depositing its money, claiming it had put the Lyca employees wellbeing at risk.

It added: “With regards the general theme of cash handling, the articles themselves note that there is no suggestion by BuzzFeed of impropriety from the origin of funds to Lycamobile and that they trail those funds to subsequent deposit with institutions such as the Post Office or for collection by G4S.

“That evidential trail of funds from collection off customers through to deposit in fact illustrates the lawful handling of those funds.

“We are concerned, though, that BuzzFeed has published video and photos featuring the faces of Lycamobile and Post Office employees, which has heightened the security risk to those individuals when in fact their articles could have been published without such identification.

“We view those actions as unnecessary and as some readers have commented in response to the articles, has created risk to individuals over processes that are a non story‟.