Municipal Fraud- West Linn
Part 1 of 3
Municipal fraud is all around us explains Richard Seals CFE, CPA, CMA in his recent article: From First to Worst in Fraud-Magazine.
West Linn, Oregon’s former city finance director, Elma Magkamit, was a compulsive gambler. She also lied about being both a college graduate and a CPA.
The former director had unprecedented control over the city’s finances, and for almost every month between 2000-2005, wrote herself a check for $30,000 (on average) from the city’s accounts payable voided check stock. This ended up being a 1.42 million dollar embezzlement scheme according to the article.
One thing that struck me from the current West Linn chief financial officer’s recent article was that before the city had discovered the fraud, it hadn’t conducted an external audit for five years (based on the City Council’s firing of the previous external auditors). In this case, the City Council’s lack of strategic offense left the city wide open.