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  • Wellington foodbank investigated for fraud

    A Wellington foodbank is being investigated for fraud, after it was deemed to be involved in "serious wrongdoing".
    The Wellington Foodbank Service - not associated with the one run by the Wellington City Mission - has also now been stripped of its charitable status, with the Department of Internal Affairs advising major donors not to hand over more money.

    The bulk of existing donations appear to be have disappeared, as liquidators find the charity's bank accounts emptied and almost nothing of value in its Wellington CBD offices. The department has alleged in court documents filed late last year that the foodbank spent donations on junk food, booze and electronics, while giving only a fraction to the hungry.

    Only 4 per cent of $770,000 donated to the charity went to helping the needy, the department said.
    Most of the money donated was missing or had been paid to the foodbank's fundraiser, Wellingtonian Michael Hawkins, who made numerous ATM withdrawals, it said.

    On paper, Mr Hawkins was contracted only to fundraise, but the department believes he was the founder, controller and main beneficiary of the charity.
    Mr Hawkins, who was declared bankrupt in May last year, again denied any wrongdoing yesterday, blaming others involved in the charity.
    Comments 1 Comment
    1. Corrigenda's Avatar
      Corrigenda -
      Only 4% passed on?? That sounds about the correct ratio to me. How else does the Red Cross pay their CEO absolute millions along with a private jet?? And didn't Matt McCarten pass on about 7% of what he raised in the mystery envelope appeal he ran years ago??
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