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Tip of the iceberg ... Two parish council officers arrested in major corruption probe

Published:Friday | June 24, 2016 | 6:38 PM

Jamaica's elite anti-corruption agency has described Friday's raid at the Manchester Parish Council and elsewhere in the parish and in Clarendon as the tip of the iceberg in a major fraud probe.

Already, two people, including the deputy superintendent of roads and works at the council have been arrested and the director of investigations at the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA), Cleon March, says more suspects are being pursued.

According to March, more than $1.6 million and thousands of United States dollars were seized Friday morning.

However, he has not revealed what sparked the probe.

"The investigation is still at a delicate stage," he said of the probe which also included the Financial Investigation Division and the Office of the Contractor General.

"This joint anti-corruption agency raid is just the tip of the iceberg. The Office of the Contractor General, Financial Investigation and MOCA are committed to the continuous fight against fraud and anti-corruption,” March said.

During the early morning raid, law enforcement officers confiscated documents, electronic and devices from the Manchester Parish Council.

MOCA says several warrants were executed at premises in Manchester and Clarendon for breaches of the Forgery and Larceny Acts.

"This operation targeted individuals who are employed to or have some connection to the Manchester Parish Council and are allegedly using their positions to commit acts of corruption and fraud from parish council contracts for their own benefits," a MOCA spokesperson said in a statement Friday afternoon.