By Alexis R. Milan
An employee from the Treasury Department has been put on administrative leave until the completion of investigations into more than half a million dollars that were discovered to have been embezzled from that department.
Financial Secretary Joseph Waight said the police and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) have both been brought into the investigation and though there is only one suspect, there is not yet enough evidence to make formal charges against anyone.
According to Waight, they believe the scheme has been in effect for the last six months. Evidence shows that bank account numbers were altered and payments diverted into another bank account. To date, three to four payments have been found, amounting to around $500,000.
Following the discovery, the Ministry of Finance introduced measures within the Department to ensure that there is more oversight, Waight assured.
The account to which the money was diverted, has since been frozen by the FIU and the account holder is currently under investigation. Waight said he could not say how much if any of the misappropriated funds had been spent.
He also clarified that the embezzled funds, which were meant for a private individual, will also have to be refunded. Investigations continue and Waight said he had no idea ßas to when the investigation would be complete.