A senior official at the transport authority is being investigated for suspected fraud and misappropriation.

Police sources confirmed they have been investigating an official involved in driver permitting and testing at Transport Malta over the past few weeks.

The case revolves around a complaint that the official pocketed money at least three times from applicants about to sit for a test to obtain their driver’s licence.

The complaint alleges the official charged foreign nationals a fee for a translator to be present during the examination but, rather than give the money to the authority, he pocketed it himself.

On October 30, the police conducted a search of his office and walked out with some paperwork. The official was also arrested and taken in for questioning.

Times of Malta understands that, although he has not yet been suspended, the official has not shown up for work since. 

The investigation started earlier last month after a whistleblower flagged suspected abuse by the official.

Sources said another member of staff at the transport authority was cooperating with the police and confirmed that receipts had not been issued for the three payments allegedly made to the official. 

Employed with authority since 2005

Replying to questions, a Transport Malta spokesperson confirmed that the authority had received anonymous letters about the man which are the subject of a police investigation.

“He has been given instructions not to report for work until the police informs the authority whether they plan on taking criminal steps against him,” the spokesperson said.

She added that he had been employed with the authority since 2005 and had been working in the licensing department since 2010.

The authority had received anonymous letters about the official

Meanwhile, the anonymous letters sent to the authority make several other allegations of abuse against the official.

Other abuse flagged in the letters includes the misuse of Transport Malta fuel and vehicles.

“All this is known to the authority, yet, nothing seems to be happening about it,” one of the letters reads.

Sources at the authority said they were reviewing the claims but had not yet found any supporting evidence.  

“What had happened in the past at Transport Malta is happening again today,” the letter warns. 

Back in 2012 an audit at Transport Malta had found that some people had “fraudulently benefited” by acquiring a licence without even having sat for a test.

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