PracticeAccounting FirmsTreasury scam cost government £1m

Treasury scam cost government £1m

A single case of fraud worth over £1m and involving just one member of staff hit the Treasury Solicitor's Department in the 1998/99 tax year.

The scam at the TSD – the executive agency which examines cases involving other government departments and offices – was the biggest government fraud since 1997.

It was revealed after the Treasury outlining internal theft and fraud over the past four years in reply to a question in the House of Commons from Tory finance spokesman John Bercow.

The 1998-99 incident was the worst case within Whitehall and within the Treasury department, which suffered two other cases over the period, one involving £250 in 1999/00 and one involving £170,000 in 2000/01.

Economic secretary Ruth Kelly said the data was an analysis of frauds and thefts committed by departments’ own employees.

Some departments made a nil return for each of the four years, Kelly said, and some of the figures were estimates reported at a stage when final values were not known.

The report revealed:

  • The second largest value of cases involving 129 Ministry of Defence staff and totalling £829,000 also occurred in 1998/99.
  • At the MoD there were cases worth £585,000 in 1997-98, £268,000 in 1999/2000 and £493,000 in 2000/01.
  • The third largest total in a year occurred in 1999/00 at the Inland Revenue, with seven cases involving £827,000.
  • Cases at the Revenue were worth just under £10,000 in 1997/98, £139,000 in 1998/99 and £188,000 in 2000/01.

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