2 years later, RNC investigation of N.L. school board fraud allegations continues

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The province won’t release any reports or forensic audits related to allegations of fraud at the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District because they’re linked to a continuing RNC investigation.

CBC News asked for those documents, through access to information.

But the Department of Finance replied that they fall outside sunshine laws, because they relate “to an investigation by the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary if all matters in respect of the investigation have not been completed.”

The RNC confirmed to CBC News the file is open and there is an active probe still ongoing.

“Financial and other economic crimes often take longer to investigate, in general, due to the nature of the evidence which often requires a longer amount of time to thoroughly review,” Const. Geoff Higdon wrote in an email.

“These types of investigations can be quite complex and often require investigators to utilize additional resources and experts.”

Meanwhile, a separate review of the situation by the auditor general is also not ready for release, although that is expected to happen over the next few months.

The government and school board are remaining tight-lipped on the current status of affairs, citing the ongoing investigations.

In an emailed statement, the Department of Education said a number of changes have been implemented as a result of a review of processes at the school board.

In its own statement, the school district stressed that it is “fully co-operating” with the police and the auditor general, and confirmed that “as a result of a review of internal processes, potential irregularities were found.”

That resulted in “employees no longer working for the district.”

But the school board declined to reveal how many employees are gone, or what changes have been implemented to protect the public purse.

Government and school board officials first publicly disclosed concerns about financial irregularities at the school district nearly two years ago.

Read the full story over at CBC News.

This story was summarized by Canadian Fraud News Inc.