Administrators from the municipal buildings office had intended to pay the money – 464,252 kronor ($56,000) – into the account of the Gothenburg city centre district council to cover the entire cost of premises the council had been unable to rent out in 2008. Instead the money wound up in the hands of a 25-year-old man with a protected identity who is well known among local drug addicts.
“We should of course have called and checked but we did not believe it was possible to make a payment to a private individual through our internal payment system,” Ralph Sköld, head of the buildings office, told Metro.
Sköld characterised as a “catastrophe” the fact that the money was paid into the known criminal’s account on December 18th. By the time the error was detected in the New Year, the unlikely beneficiary of the city’s generosity had already emptied his account and skipped the country.
“We’re not doing so well right now,” said Ralph Sköld.