Groningen university workers suspected of embezzling €1.2 million

Rijksuniversiteit_Groningen,_Hauptgebäude
University of Groningen (Photo: JoachimKohlerBremen/Wikimedia Commons)University of Groningen (Photo: JoachimKohlerBremen/Wikimedia Commons)

Three employees of the University of Groningen (RUG) are suspected of embezzling 1.2 million euros in public money from the university and funneling it into their own foundation, the board of the Faculty of Arts announced in a letter that NOS has in its possession. All three employees were affiliated with the Faculty of Arts.

The University suspended the three employees in March lat year after a tip from a European partner about uncertainties regarding the financing of the Network on Humanitarian Action foundation. The foundation is not affiliated with RUG, but was registered at the address of the Faculty of Arts, according to the broadcaster. The foundation was established, without the knowledge of the university, to develop scientific activities for a European university program for students who want to offer assistance in crisis areas. 

RUG hired a private firm to investigate the foundation. That investigation showed that 1.2 million euros in subsidies and tuition never ended up at the university, but disappeared into the foundation, according to the broadcaster. 

The board of the Faculty of Arts said that the three employees put confidence in the university at stake and stressed that they "will do everything in their power" to regain that trust. The letter states that "employment law measures" were taken against the three employees. One of them was dismissed. Charges of subsidy fraud and forgery were also filed with the police. 

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