Friday, August 21, 2009

Swedish Red Cross Officer Faked Academic Records

There were reports in June 2009 in alternative media (The Local,, Swedennews) that Johan af Donner, the communication officer for the Swedish Röda Korset, was not only remanded into custody charged with defrauding the Red Cross of more than 2.5 million SEK (about 250.000 €), but had also defrauded the Swedish Cancer Society of another 3 million or so when he served as their head of donations. He also misused the Red Cross business credit card for personal expenses.

During the investigations it came to light that af Donner had also apparently falsified his qualifications, using liquid paper on a copy of a degree from a friend. He left both copies behind when fired from a previous company and made to leave immediately, according to Realtid, an online business zine that has been closely following the case. The link is in Swedish, but there is a picture of the falsified document, presumably before being fotocopied. The University of Stockholm has determined that af Donner was enrolled in a business administration program but was never granted a degree.

af Donner was released from prison four weeks later, since the government had by then managed to freeze his assets, in particular the money he made by selling off his apartment in a fancy part of Stockholm (Ostermalm) just before the Red Cross story broke. A crony who helped in the fraud by sending made-up bills has also been identified and charged.

In other news, the Red Cross Hospital in Stockholm has to close because they have no money. They are, however, economically separate from the Swedish Red Cross, so the officers of the Red Cross deny that there is a connection here.

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