On March 6, the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) forwarded an embezzlement case involving the Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) accountant, Karma Chophel, to the district court.
He has been charged for embezzling a little more than Nu 5.5mn from his earlier workplace, the Ministry of Works and Human Settlement (MoWHS) where he used to work as an accountant. During the period 2007-2008, he was the project accountant for the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction, funded by the Asian Development Bank and implemented by the ministry which involved the construction of the 60-bedded hostel, toilets, and water supply for the National Workforce Children at Sengore (between Bumthang and Mongar).
The hostel was worth more than Nu 4.1mn while the toilets and water supply construction amounted to Nu 2.3 mn.
Karma Chophel managed the project’s budget then and later on, he was transferred to ACC.
The case was forwarded to the OAG after an internal audit conducted by the ministry revealed lapses in the project budget.
However, he has paid back the embezzled amount to the Royal Audit Authority.
Although Karma Chophel won’t have to restitute any more money he will be charged for “criminal action as this is not a civil case; he will be punished,” said the attorney of the prosecution division, Ugyen Wangdi.
Meanwhile, the case had been forwarded to the OAG on May 9, 2011; there had been a slight delay, additional documents were required.
The first hearing on the case will be conducted within 10 days of the time the case was registered.