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Antigua Observer – An official at the cash-strapped regional airline, LIAT, confirmed that an “internal investigation” is under way into alleged financial discrepancies involving one of its employees at the company’s Coolidge headquarters.
The confirmation came from LIAT’s Acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Julie Reifer Jones, who told OBSERVER media yesterday that the investigation was a “routine” measure which businesses undergo from time to time “if there are actions we consider suspect”.
But according to our source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, and who has close knowledge of the ongoing probe, the authorities are trying to determine whether the company’s executive benefited personally from issuing rebate tickets to travellers.
The source said that not only did the individual issue a large number of discounted tickets, but the subject of the probe failed to pass on the correct taxes to the relevant authorities.
Another source told to OBSERVER media that three individuals who received rebate tickets from the said LIAT employee were taken off flights over the weekend.
It turned out that the relevant taxes were not paid.
Our sources added the LIAT employee in question has not reported to work for more than a week since word of the scandal broke and is now in “hiding”, and that lawmen are also involved in the investigation.
When we put that information to the LIAT CEO she responded: “I cannot confirm or deny that information.”
Reifer-Jones told OBSERVER media that there has been “no change” in the status of the employee who she declined to name.