On Monday 1st June 2015, the evening standard reported on page 22, that following claims of fraudulent activity by employees of a Council affiliated housing organisation, the Metropolitan Police have begun a formal investigation and have arrested one employee in connection with the council housing fraud claims.
The Council has reportedly began its own review of the incidents last year and has suspended five employees suspected of having taken bribes and gifts from contractors in return for work which was never carried out. The employees were alleged to have accepted gifts ranging from holidays to football tickets, in allocating contracts for repair and upgrade works to contractor Lakehouse as part of the Councils “£184 million Decent Homes Scheme to upgrade properties with new kitchens, bathrooms and windows”. Work which was reported to have never been carried out by the Contractors.
It is also reported that in a separate incident and allegation of fraud uncovered by the Council regarding “management of contractors and contracts”, a man in his thirties was arrested in January 2015 and been released on bail after the matter was passed onto the Met police. It is understood that this matter is unrelated to allegations of bribery in connection with the Contractors Lakehouse. Further separate incidents of fraud are also currently on going by the Council after a whistle-blower made startling claims to Mayor Jules Pipe that “three senior employees and a relative had abused taxpayer’s funds and committed fraud”.
Unsurprisingly, the seriousness nature of the alleged abuse by employees of Council’s affiliated housing organisation, has put a considerable number of tenants at a distinct disadvantage and under a huge amount of strain regarding essential and outstanding repairs due to their properties.