Fraud cases soar in Marshall Islands

11:43 am on 26 September 2019

Investigations by the Marshall Islands Office of the Auditor General into fraudulent activity by government officials tripled in the first half of 2019 compared to the previous six-month period.

The Marshall Islands Nitijela meeting earlier in 2019

The Marshall Islands Nitijela meeting earlier in 2019 Photo: Hilary Hosia

In the report to the Nitijela the office said a total of 13 new allegations of theft of government money, bribery, and abuse of public office are currently under investigation.

This adds to the four investigations into embezzlement and using public office for personal gain reported in January and the 10 investigations into embezzlement, abuse of public office, and check forgery listed in the August 2018 semi-annual report.

This is a total of 27 investigations by the Auditor General into fraudulent activity in government over the past 18 months.

The Auditor General, Junior Patrick, writes in the latest report that, "we continue our reviews into all allegations that are reported to the Office including those that we come across in our audit engagements."

"During this reporting period we recorded a total of 13 new allegations related to embezzlement/misappropriation, bribery and abuse of public office."

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