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The Supervisor of Banks Yoav Lehman on Wednesday revealed 21 incidents of bank employee embezzlement, totalling NIS 7.5 million in funds, during the course of 2005.
The first report of its kind, in which Israeli banks had to provide detailed information about occurring bank embezzlement cases, showed that one single instance amounted to a total of about NIS 5.6m., involving a dealer at one of the bank's branches abroad. The Bank of Israel declined to comment on the identity of the bank.
The average embezzlement by bank employees amounted to NIS 94,000.
In nine of the reported cases, a damage of NIS 5.8m, was caused to bank customers, though the amount was returned. In five of the 21 cases, the damage amounted to less than NIS 15,000.
"The reported cases did not reveal significant findings, which would have a broad effect on customers or which would show a deficiency affecting the continuation of the corporation or which pointed to a deeper problem in the banking system," Lehman said.
The Supervisor of Banks division has completed its investigation into 19 of the 21 embezzlement cases. As a result, in 19 cases the respective bank employees were fired and 18 cases were handed over to the police.
Banks now have to report, immediately, any irregularities regarding cases of embezzlement amounting to a minimum of NIS 15,000 in Israel or $15,000 at an international branch.