A government payroll administrator has been sentenced to two years in prison after claiming a dead man’s expenses.
Andre Malu defrauded the Department of Health and the Ministry of Justice by stealing more than £137,000 and sending the money to accounts he had set up using false documents.
Malu’s fraud came to light after he claimed expenses for a man who had died several years earlier.
Malu committed the fraud while working as a payroll administrator at the Department of Health, where he was in charge of expenses claims for members of Mental Health Review Tribunals. When responsibility for the tribunals transferred to the Ministry of Justice, Malu kept his post and continued to defraud the government.
Malu stole a total of £137, 285.80 between 1 July 2005 and 1 March 2008 through numerous fake payments, which were generated after genuine recipients’ bank details were altered on the computer systems.
Mick Hayes, operational fraud manager of the NHS Counter Fraud Service’s Operational Support Team, which helped to uncover the fake payments, said: “This is a good example of the convictions that are achieved through our close working with the Police and investigators in government departments.
“All suspicions of fraud against the Department of Health should be reported to the NHS Counter Fraud Service. Wherever appropriate, we will thoroughly investigate, press for prosecution and push for the strongest sanctions.”
Malu pleaded guilty to two counts of theft and two counts of concealment of criminal property.