Virovitica Official Commits Suicide after Defrauding Town Budget?

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, June 19, 2019 – A meeting of the town council of the northeastern town of Virovitica on Tuesday was marked by a heated debate on the latest developments following the suicide of the head of the town’s administration department for the financial matters, Siniša Palm, after it was discovered that the town budget was defrauded of several million of kuna.

During the debate Mayor Ivica Kirin explained that the sum embezzled from the budget amounted to 17.5 million kuna (2.37 million euro) and that as soon as he was informed by the bank concerned about irregularities he immediately reacted.

Nevertheless, the opposition insisted on the mayor’s resignation, and responding to their criticism, Kirin reiterated that the local budget was managed according to the ISO 9001 certificate and that each year, the local authorities were given the positive opinion from the Office of the State Auditor regarding the public finances.

Explaining that the money had been defrauded in the “so-called” interception of transfers before they were entered into the city’s accounting books, and that accounts of a sport club also were involved in these dealings which included the fake documents, Kirin said that he could not divulge any more information about how the money had been defrauded because of the confidentiality of the ongoing investigation in the case.

The mayor said that security checks of commercial banks, tax administration and state authorities had failed.

Kirin said that he felt subjective responsibility for this case as he had allowed the employment of the late Palm after he had submitted his application for the job advertised by the town authorities, however, Kirin said that he had no objective accountability.

Palm, 37, disappeared on 31 May and he was found dead on 3 June, and the local prosecutorial authorities established that he had committed suicide.

During his address to the press after the council’s meeting Kirin recalled the timeline of the events.

Kirin said that on 30 May, he had been informed by the bank of wrongdoing and that he had immediately checked the situation together with his associates. That day, the mayor got informed of the fact that the head of the town financial department had gambling problems.

In the morning of 31 May, Kirin went to the bank and later to the police to present the case, after that he ordered that Palm should be served with a notice stating that he is suspended.

According to media reports, Palm committed suicide after being suspected of embezzling money from the town budget.

More Virovitica news can be found in the Lifestyle section.


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