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Bank worker swindled 5.5 million

A former employee of Norwegian bank DnB NOR has confessed to gross embezzlement, fraud and falsification of documents that amounted to NOK 5.5 million (USD 991,458).

DnB NOR is Norway's biggest financial services group, with its headquarters (above) in Oslo. PHOTO: Views and News

The male employee from Trøndelag, northern Norway, gave himself up to the police in July last year and told officers that it was a ” big relief” to confess to the crime, according to local newspaper Trønder-Avisa. The case against the employee will come to Inntrøndelag District Court on 8 September.

The embezzlement is described by a local police spokesperson, Amund Sand, as one of the most serious in Trøndelag’s history due to its size and “durability.” Speaking to Trønder-Avisa, Sand confirmed that the embezzlement began in 2002. He also stated that the embezzlement was “rotating,” involving continuous new embezzlement through one account to cover missing funds in another. The man carried out nine acts of embezzlement to the tune of NOK 3.2 million (USD 576,848) and three acts of fraud that involved NOK 2.3 million (USD 414,610). The cases of fraud involved taking out loans in others’ names – including those of near relations – using falsified documents. The former employee changed bank statements to hide the fraudulent transactions.

The man decided to come forward voluntarily to the police after suspicious transfers of NOK 1 million (USD 180,265) were discussed internally with DnB NOR. The police then informed the bank, leading to a lengthy internal audit by the company in order to uncover the extent of the crime. Police spokesperson Sand told Trønder-Avisa that the only explanation the accused had come forward with for his crimes was that “he had had personal economic problems.” “The motive has not been an essential topic in the questioning, but he could have said something about it if he wanted,” Sand added.

The regional leader of DnB NOR, Torgeri Skirstad, was quick to stress to Trønder-Avisa that “no customer suffered any loss” as a result of the fraud, with the bank covering the money taken. Over 10 customers were originally hit by the former employee’s activities. The former employee will have to pay NOK 1.3 million (USD 234,345) if the bank is successful in its compensation demands, despite the fact that he has already settled up NOK 1.2 million (USD 216,318).

This latest bank fraud case comes as the trial of five suspects in the Nordea bank fraud case – believed to be the biggest of its kind in Norwegian history – began in Oslo this week.

Views and News from Norway/Aled-Dilwyn Fisher
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