4 Feb 2008

Vanuatu PM's staffer sacked over meeting with foreigners linked to alleged scam

4:53 pm on 4 February 2008

Vanuatu's government remains tightlipped on how it became involved with three foreigners spoken to by police over their alleged involvement in a multi-billion dollar investment scam.

Vanuatu police have been questioning an Australian man who was part of the group of three foreigners who met with Prime Minister Ham Lini last week over what they called an investment opportunity.

Police were alerted after Mr Lini became suspicious of the foreigners and asked his country's Reserve Bank to investigate.

The Director-General for the Prime Minister's office, Jean Sese, says a member of Mr Lini's staff was sacked over the meeting.

"This person, who was terminated, was reported to the media because he was facilitating this meeting with the Prime Minister without knowing that information."

Meanwhile, an American and a British national fled Vanuatu before being spoken to by New Zealand police over the alleged scam while in transit.