Ministry to probe housing corporation embezzlement

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Amsterdam's Rochdale Housing Director Hubert Möllenkamp dismissed under suspicion of embezzlement.

AMSTERDAM—The Housing Ministry is planning to hold a further inquiry into Amsterdam's Rochdale Housing Corporation. Rochdale's director, Hubert Möllenkamp, was summarily dismissed on Sunday for embezzlement.

The dismissal follows an internal investigation by the Board of Directors and independent auditor Deloitte. Möllenkamp had already received a warning for possible misconduct in October. He's under suspicion of being involved in dubious real estate deals. In addition, Möllenkamp is suspected of embezzling funds to purchase a private villa in Spain, and to hire a company car, namely a Maserati with chauffer.

Several questionable real estate deals in which Möllenkamp was involved are still under investigation by Deloitte. According to interim-Director Gerard Erents, the investigation should be finished in the first quarter of 2009.

Rochdale has recently implemented internal conduct and procedural codes, according to Erents. “We’re re-establishing strict oversight principles to ensure that fewer unilateral decisions can be made. We’re also making it clearer what people can and can’t do. It happens in every organization that procedure slackens after a while.”

The interim-Director didn’t answer questions about Möllenkamp’s luxurious life-style.

The Housing Ministry wants to know why Rochdale's Board of Commissioners failed  to act for years. Mr Möllenkamp was suspended a few months ago when it became clear he had been involved in suspect real estate deals.

Additionallyl, an independent investigation revealed Mr Möllenkamp had awarded himself pay rises, pension allowances and bonuses without recording these in Rochdale's administration. He had also been using a company credit card for private expenses.

Radio Netherlands/NRC Handelsblad/Expatica

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