Dunedin City Council has confirmed that a probe trying to find missing fleet vehicles has become a fraud investigation.
The council called in financial specialists from Deloitte four weeks ago for what it now calls a far-reaching investigation of its Citifleet and Citipark departments.
The inquiry is centred on what appears to be a discrepancy in the number of council-owned fleet vehicles.
The investigation followed the sudden death, six weeks ago, of the departments' longstanding team leader, Brent Bachop.
Council chief executive Sue Bidrose has for the first time described Deloitte's work as investigating possible fraud.
Asked why the police were not doing the investigating, Dr Bidrose said the police were aware of the situation, but the council will need to have evidence of wrongdoing before referring the issues on.