Vermont town finance scam blamed on ‘stupid mistakes’

October 25, 2019 GMT

NORWICH, Vt. (AP) — A Vermont town lost almost $250,000 in an email scam.

A report released by Norwich details how town Finance Director Donna Flies ignored instructions to stop unauthorized payments from municipal accounts.

Town Treasurer Cheryl Lindberg says she confronted Flies telling her that payments from Norwich accounts require select board approval.

Authorities say Flies assumed emails requesting large sums of money were from her boss, Town Manager Herb Durfee.

Flies told investigators the only thing she did wrong was to make “stupid mistakes.”

Valley News reports the report blames both Flies for failing to detect the scam and town officials for failing to confront her. No one’s been charged with a crime.

Officials say that $79,765 was returned by Comerica Bank.

It’s not clear if Flies, who was placed on administrative leave, has returned to work.