A former manager at Akademiska Hus in Lund is being investigated by the Swedish Economic Crime Authority on the suspicion of financial crime. Lundagård has received intelligence that this person has used the means of Akademiska hus to renovate their private property in connection to the expansion of the engine laboratory at the Faculty of Engineering.
Text: Oscar Madunic Olsson – Translation: Cecilia Eriksson
During the winter of 2012, the expansion of the combustion engine laboratory had its beginning. The project was led by the government owned company Akademiska hus, a company that owns and administers the University buildings. In January of 2014, the expansion was finished and the Faculty of Engineering’s engine laboratory became the largest one in Sweden. But according to Lundagård’s intelligence, everything was not done properly.
In September of 2016, Akademiska hus announced on their website that the company had reported a former manager to the police on the grounds of “illegal abuse of position within the company”. An internal investigation had brought to light that there had been financial irregularities of millions of kronor.
According to the intelligence Lundagård received, the former employee at Akademiska hus allegedly used company means to renovate a private property in connection to the expansion of the engine laboratory. However, John Erik Persson, the current property manager of Akademiska hus Region Syd, doesn’t want to confirm or deny the allegation.
“I cannot provide any additional information. The issue is in the hands of the Economic Crime Authority and there is a confidentiality during ongoing investigations,” John Erik Persson says.
The University: ‘We Know Nothing’
The construction department at Lund University, LU Byggnad, has been notified of the police report that’s been filed against the former manager. The University, on the other hand, hasn’t received any information about any irregularities that might have affected the University’s construction projects.
“We don’t have any insight into the way Akademiska hus handles invoices. We assume that a government owned company has routines to discover irregularities. According to Akademiska hus the irregularities only concern their own maintenance work, not any of the University’s reconstructions or new developments. The ongoing investigation will reveal whether this is the case or not,” Anna Liljebjörn says, Assistant Estates Manager at LU Byggnad.
When the University orders a reconstruction or an expansion of one of their premises, Akademiska hus pays for the contract itself while the University’s rent is raised.
“If it turns out the University has suffered a financial disadvantage on account of these events, we will demand replacement from Akademiska hus. However, at the moment, we will wait and see until we know whether any of our projects has been affected by this,” Anna Liljebjörn says.
The investigation of the former manager is still ongoing and the Swedish Economic Crime Authority states the prosecutor is counting on a decision being made about a possible prosecution later this spring.
Lundagård has been seeking the former manager under suspicion for a comment.
The State’s Money Machine