Norway priest charged with $2m fraud

The Local Norway
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Norway priest charged with $2m fraud
Are Blomhoff (left) when he collected the King's Medal of Merit in February - Håkon Mosvold Larsen Scanpix

A priest from Norway has been charged with embezzling 14.6 million kroner ($2.1m) from a religious foundation run by the country's Methodist church.


Are Blomhoff, 61,  managing  director of the Bethany foundation in Bergen, is accused of funnelling the money from a Spanish bank account connected to Fundación Bethany, a nursing home in Spain operated by the charity, over a period of seven years. 
Blomhoff stepped down as director in January this year after Christian Hysing-Dahl, the foundation's chairman, confronted him after an internal investigation. He then resigned from the priesthood in August ending a 35-year career in the priesthood. 
"I'm not going to comment on who the whistleblower is, because they have very strong protection in the law," Christian Hysing-Dahl, the chairman of the Bethany Foundation in Bergen told The Local. "Our internal controls haven't been sufficient, but keep in mind that he was the managing director of the foundation." 
"In terms of size, this is probably one of the biggest cases Hordaland police have ever investigated," said Morten Holmen, head of economic crime at the police in Bergen.
The results of the charity's internal investigation, as well as computers and files used by Blomhoff, have been passed to the police. 


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