Oxfam anti-fraud boss behind bars

Oxfam’s former head of counter-fraud has been jailed for two years and five months for stealing more than £64,000 from the charity.

Edward McKenzie-Green, 34, from Chipping Norton, was sentenced at the Old Bailey in London on Tuesday after pleading guilty to the theft in March.

A total of £64,612.58 was stolen by McKenzie-Green by paying the money from Cowley-based charity Oxfam to fake companies between February and December 2011.

He resigned from Oxfam in November 2011 with a £29,000 payoff, before being arrested in April 2012 and denying any wrongdoing.

Michelle Russell, head of investigations and enforcement at charity regulator, the Charities Commission, worked with Oxfam during the investigations.

She said: “We welcome the strong message the courts have given that those who abuse the position of trust they hold within a charity for their own personal advantage will be brought to justice.

“This acts as a reminder to all charities of the importance of ensuring you have basic financial controls and reporting mechanisms in place.

“The larger the charity, the more we expect you to do. But no matter your size or activities, be vigilant and do not be afraid to ask questions or raise concerns if you suspect something.”

A statement by Oxfam’s current head of counter-fraud, Oliver May, said: “Oxfam uses donations from the British people to help eradicate poverty and suffering across the world.

“For someone to commit fraud and use that money for their own selfish gains is clearly unacceptable.

“The actions of Edward McKenzie-Green were brought to light by Oxfam’s own robust counter fraud measures, and we work tirelessly to ensure that money donated to Oxfam is not lost through the actions of rogue employees.

Oxfam is now working to recover the money stolen.