The Swedish Public Employment Service said that people with links to organized crime have infiltrated the agency to learn the business from the inside, and to exploit the welfare system, according to a report of Radio Sweden (SR) on Friday.
Unit manager Eva-Lena Edberg at the Swedish Public Employment Service told SR that the organized criminals used the agency to obtain falsified wage subsidies, compensation for companies that employ people with reduced working capacity.
According to the agency, employees within the Swedish Public Employment Service have on several occasions been identified as acting as infiltrators for criminal networks that commit crimes against welfare systems. Edberg was quoted as saying that people have been employed at the agency through normal recruitment processes, and once inside, their mission is to learn the system and working methods, to enable organized crime.
The Swedish Public Employment Service does not want to comment on how many suspected cases there are, and the extent of the problem. But according to Edberg, the criminal arrangements have become more organized and advanced, the report said.
Edberg said that the joint government initiative against organized crime, which began in 2009 and which the agency joined in 2014, is crucial in order to be able to identify suspected infiltrators. However, there is still a lot to be improved at work.
The Swedish Public Employment Service is a state administrative agency, which comes under the Ministry of Labor and is responsible for public employment and labor market policy operations.