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Credit card expense row

PUBLISHED: 10:25 13 August 2009 | UPDATED: 17:03 25 August 2010

A COUNCILLOR has slammed a decision not to pursue an investigation into alleged fraudulent activity of a former leader.

A COUNCILLOR has slammed a decision not to pursue an investigation into alleged fraudulent activity of a former leader.

Alan Deadman spoke out at a Bexley council meeting on Monday, revealing findings of an internal audit into former leader Ian Clement's council credit card use.

Mr Clement, who was quizzed by the council behind closed doors, was ordered to pay back £2,087 of taxpayers' money by audit chiefs.

Mr Deadman said: "There is one thing about Mr Clement - he is not naïve.

"He knew exactly what he was doing. We know when we go to these conferences who is paying the tab. If he has claimed for something, he knows if someone has already picked up the tab.When I was young, on the street that was called fraud."

But Angela Hogan, deputy director of legal services said there was no evidence of fraud.

Audit chief, David Hogan, defended Mr Clement, adding: "He did not intend to claim anything he was not entitled to."

A corporate credit card was used from July 2007 to May 2008, issued by then acting chief executive David Berry.

The investigation showed systematic failures at the council. A report stated: "The purchasing card checking and authorisation process for the leader was not robust enough... staff did not feel it was their role to question the authority and judgement of the leader in its use.

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