Local June 2, 2015 | 9:02 am

Acento: Immigration probes possible ‘ballooned’ spending by ex-chief

Santo Domingo.- Dominican Republic’s Immigration Agency is probing possible ballooning and irregular procedures in several contracts worth hundreds of thousands of dollars assigned to companies during the tenure of then director Jose Ricardo Taveras, of the minority party FNP.

Immigration officials also review the budget and nearly RD$1.5 billion in revenue allegedly spent irregularly from 2012 to 2014 by the previous authorities.

Outlet acento.com.do reports that investigators want to know why the money wasn’t deposited in the Unified Treasury Account, as required by law, “but instead were used at the discretion of contracts with supplier companies and contractors now being reviewed.

The funds are from taxes charged at airports, ports and border crossings, although the Foreign Affairs Dept. contributes the highest amount during the period, or RD$800.8 million

Citing official documents, Acento.com.do says 2012 budget revenue topped RD$442.9 million; RD$482.1 million in 2013 and around RD$500.0 million in 2014.

Immigration purchased more than RD$100 million in equipment and technology services, construction, repairs and services from 2012 to 2013. “The funds taken from extra-budgetary funds weren’t transferred to the Treasury Account.”

The outlet adds that Immigration’s new director Maj. Gen. Ruben Paulino Sem confirmed the investigation.

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