A 52-YEAR-OLD man has been arrested on suspicion of fraud in connection with substantial sums reported missing from the London Diocesan Fund.
In answer to a Church Times request, the Metropolitan Police said on Wednesday: “On Tuesday 15 February, a 52-year-old man was arrested by officers on suspicion of fraud by abuse of position and money laundering. He has been bailed pending further enquiries. The investigation relates to an alleged fraud at a charitable organisation based in London. Enquiries continue.”
A statement from the diocese of London said: “We can confirm that, last year, the London Diocesan Fund (LDF) reported a past financial matter to the Police. The LDF has submitted historical information and has been supporting the authorities fully with their ongoing enquiries.
“The LDF has followed police advice at every stage in terms of maintaining the confidential and sensitive nature of their complex work. A restricted number of people and relevant governance bodies within the diocese have, in recent months, been notified — with the full knowledge and consent of the Police.
“Any church or other organisation known to be relevant has already been approached by the Police as part of their investigation. While the Police’s work continues, we cannot disclose any further details.”
The LDF is the charity through which the diocese pays for the stipends and housing of parish clergy and chaplaincies. The Charity Commission reports that the total income of the LDF was £44.4 million in the financial year ending 31 December 2020, with a total expenditure of £47.2 million in that time.