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COUNCIL FINANCE OFFICER JAILED FOR THREE YEARS

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Former Redbridge LBC finance manager (admin & legal services directorate) Wijit Jayaratne has been jailed for three...
Former Redbridge LBC finance manager (admin & legal services directorate) Wijit Jayaratne has been jailed for three years for his part in a £116,000 fraud, the East Anglian Daily Times reports (p5).

Snaresbrook crown court judge Martin Reynolds yesterday said that Mr Jayaratne had 'quite shamelessly' betrayed his position of trust.

The six-week trial was told that Jayaratne submitted false invoices claiming bogus firms operated by Colin Tyrell had done work for the council, the paper reports.

Prosecutor Walton Hornsby told the court that between July 1992 and December 1993 Jayaratne authorised illegal payments of £116,000, most of which ended up in the bank accounts of front companies Tyrell operated.

The EADT reports that the accused had a 'unique knowledge' of Redbridge LBC's budget procedure and needed Tyrell's bogus firms to launder the money. The fraud was discovered in late 1993 when the head of the purchasing department ran audit checks.

The paper reports that both men denied the charge. None of the £116,000 has been recovered.

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