Puerto Rico varsity’s finance chief falls prey to scam

San Juan, April 3 (IANS/EFE) The head of finance at the University of Puerto Rico resigned after a scammer bilked the institution out of $150,000, UPR President Miguel Munoz said.

Edwin Reyes decided to leave the university because he felt “very responsible” for the outlay, which was done with three cheques of $50,000 each, though payment was finally stopped when certain irregularities were discovered.

Munoz, who met the finance committee of the UPR Board of Trustees to analyze the matter, said that Reyes resigned of his own accord.

The UPR president Tuesday said that he himself never considered resigning over the incident, though he was the person who first took the scammer’s call, which he then passed to the head of finance.

Munoz said last week that the con man pretended to be Puerto Rico’s public affairs secretary, Jorge Colberg.

The swindler told Munoz that the UPR was going to receive $15 million from the government, although for that to occur the institution first had to submit three cheques for $50,000 each to cover administrative expenses.

Media reported the existence of a scheme in Puerto Rico in which individuals pose as members of the government to tell mayors and other public officials that they will receive millions of dollars in allocations on condition that they make payments to cover administration costs.

–IANS/EFE

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