21 July 2017
A statement from Mike Adamson, chief executive of the British Red Cross.
“We were devastated to discover that a long-serving employee in a position of trust had defrauded us. Every day we strive to help some of the most vulnerable people in the UK and overseas and for our trust to be abused in this way is really, really disappointing.
“As soon as we identified there was fraudulent activity we alerted the police and the Charity Commission and undertook an independent forensic financial audit.
“This member of staff was trusted to handle our money and that has given us cause to think long and hard about how we tighten up our procedures. We have put robust measures in place to prevent this from ever happening again.
“We have taken several important steps to review and further strengthen our financial controls and procedures to prevent this from ever happening again.
“This includes limiting access to key parts of our financial systems, reducing the ways that payments can be made and tightening controls so that payments can only be generated centrally by a smaller number of people.
“There are also increased checks on payments which are reviewed before they can be processed. As a result, we are confident that such fraud could not happen now.
“We are deeply shocked that someone from within the Red Cross community would betray our cause and our trust in this way. We are doing everything we can to recover the lost funds.
“We are relieved that this matter has come to its legal conclusion.”
This piece was updated on 17 August 2017.