Calls by public service unions for a less Serious Fraud Office fell on deaf ears yesterday, with SFO director Ron Smellie standing by a new workforce manual that emphasises seriousness and bans:
Coloured or frilly underwear
"You don't have to be mad to work here" signs
knock knock and elephant jokes
a list of confectionery items including Curly Wurlies and candy floss
indecent behaviour with photocopiers
paper aeroplanes and paper clip chains
"We're dealing with the most serious cases of financial wrongdoing imaginable," said Smellie. "I doubt whether any of the fraudsters we're trying to track down have Garfields on their desks, or pictures of their cats. You don't see senior banking officials facing cover-up allegations amusing themselves with novelty magnet sets or playing MIcrosoft Patience."