"Migrationsverket", the Swedish Migration Agency Foto: Andrea Jilder/Sveriges Radio.
"Migrationsverket", the Swedish Migration Agency (Foto: Andrea Jilder/Sveriges Radio.)

Migration Agency boss investigated for owning refugee housing firm

"Approval of this was not the right decision"
2:10 min

Swedish Migration Agency launches an investigation into a private refugee housing firm run by an agency department chief.

The 50 year old head of department is employed at the Migration Agency office in Stockholm, but is also part owner of a private firm dealing with finding accommodation for unaccompanied minor refugees, Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet reports.

Confronted by Aftonbladet's reporter, the department chief said she does not see a contradition in these activities.

“Her superior was informed about her other job and approved it. Now the superior has come to the conclusion that this approval was not the right decision”, Migration Agency Head of Stockholm Region, Veronica Lindstrand Kant, said to Swedish Radio News.

Moonlighting by state employees is strictly regulated in Sweden. State officials might commit a felony when being involved in profitable business enterprises in an area linked to their civil service job.

The Swedish Migration Agency will now launch an internal investigation into the department chief's private housing firm.

“Our control unit will look into this matter and investigate if her side activities are consistent with her position as department chief. She will keep her position during this time”, said Veronica Lindstrand Kant.

All major newspapers in Sweden covered this week the story of the department chief's private revenue. With the refugee influx and some 30,000 unaccompanied minors in Sweden last year, the Migration Agency is scrambling to find housing for asylum seekers. Private housing companies have been accused of profiting from the refugee crisis and increasing prices in an effort to profit from the situation.

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