Canadian diocese sues ex-archdeacon over fraud

The Diocese of Brandon has filed suit against its former archdeacon seeking to recover money embezzled in 2012 by the Ven. Noah James Bernard Njegovan, (30).

In a statement of claim filed in Brandon Court of Queen’s Bench, the diocese is seeking to recoup C$350,000 plus costs and damages. In May 2013 Mr. Njegovan was arrested on charges of having committed a fraud of over $5,000 while serving as executive archdeacon of the diocese and assistant to his father, Bishop James Njegovan of Brandon. Mr. Njegovan was released on bail.

Prosecutors allege that between 12 March 2012 and 12 September 2012 Mr. Njegovan used a diocesan credit card and made online transfers of funds sent by congregations to the diocese for his personal use. In his address to the October 2012 meeting diocesan Synod Bishop Njegovan stated that his son had resigned in September 2012 as executive archdeacon and was moving to Winnipeg to pursue other opportunities.

An audit conducted following the resignation last August of a second employee of the diocese uncovered financial irregularities which were reported to the diocese on 2 December 2012. A forensic audit was undertaken and the results passed to the police in January. Mr. Njegovan was arrested the following month and his license to officiate as a priest suspended.

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