16 Aug 2006

Solomons bishop probed for fund abuse

2:05 pm on 16 August 2006

Reports from Solomon Islands say an unnamed bishop of the Anglican Church of Melanesia is under investigation for allegedly using church funds in a money scheme.

Our correspondent says an internal investigation is being held and the bishop could be relieved of his duties if it is proven that he had sent tens of thousands of dollars in church funds overseas with promises of yielding a return running into millions of dollars.

Auditors have been to the Bishop's office to check church financial records.

However a spokesman for the Church of Melanesia says they will not confirm or deny that any such investigation is taking place.

The Church of Melanesia, the largest Christian denomination in Solomon Islands, is largely supported by property investments in New Zealand administered by the Auckland-based Melanesian Mission Trust Board.