Sep 28, 2011

Mental Health Matters


This Agency has been independently contacted by a number whistle blowers, who have expressed a concern about an alleged cover up at a registered charity, Mental Health Matters.  Charities have to be registered with the Charity Commission, the charities watchdog but sadly, the Commission has very limited power and is virtually toothless, so much so that it cannot independently conduct an in-depth investigation into a particular organisation – it has to rely on the Board of Trustees of the charity to complete an in-house investigation.

Charities rely on voluntary donations and in some cases, Government funding – in other cases, in all but name, the charities are  companies with their profits going to the designated charity rather than the pockets of shareholders. At “Whistle Blowers” we receive many complaints about the administration of charities and moreover, a majority of those complaints relate to alleged dishonesty, financial mismanagement or financial impropriety.
 
We are currently investigating the alleged shenanigans at Mental Health Matters, a registered charity with a £14 million turnover, most of which comes from Government or Local Authority funding – the tax payers.  It is alleged the former CEO, Ian Grant was dismissed in March for financial impropriety and that a “whitewash” investigation has taken place.
 
We are told that rather than use a firm of forensic accountants to investigate allegations against Mr Grant, the charity has used its regular auditors on whose watch the “mismanagement” occurred.  Furthermore, we are told the alleged “mismanagement” has been going on for many, many years but the auditors have been instructed to only examine documentation going back two years.  The charity has refused to report the matter to the police and to date have failed to co-operate with us; consequently, like the Charity Commission, we do not yet know the true extent of the allegation, or indeed if there is any foundation to them,
 
Our informants tell us that many thousands are involved and that the charity has purposely restricted the scale of the enquiry, so as not to alarm the Charity Commission; yet again, we do not know the extent of this particular allegation.
 
If you have detailed knowledge about the alleged fraud, we would like to hear from you.  Likewise, if you have any information about financial impropriety at any other charity we would like you to contact us.

 

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