Judgment No. 3402
1. The FAO shall pay the complainant 2,000 euros moral damages for the delay in the internal appeal.
2. All other claims are dismissed.
The Tribunal found that the evidence established an intention to defraud on the part of the complainant and that the decision to dismiss him was not disproportionate, but it awarded damages because of the delay in the internal appeal procedure.
complaint allowed; termination of employment; fraud
"[T]he complainant lodged two [Travel Expense Claims] that deliberately misstated the facts, and thereby failed to disclose the fact, that the cost of his travel [...] was effectively being paid twice by the FAO [...]. The obvious inference is that he was deliberately doing so to gain a financial benefit. This is fraud."
travel expenses; fraud
"[F]raud depends on an intention to obtain financial advantage by deception."
"The Tribunal accepts that the remedy of dismissal would not have been the only remedy available to the FAO. But the conduct of the complainant involved a serious transgression of a basic obligation of international civil servants to behave honestly in their dealings with their employer."
termination of employment; staff member's duties; fitness for international civil service
"[O]rdinarily a staff member who has been dismissed for engaging in fraud, would suffer considerable stress while waiting for the answer in an internal appeal about whether the challenged finding of fraud would be upheld or rejected. There is no reason to doubt that this would have been so in the present case. The internal appeal did take too long and the complainant is entitled to moral damages [...]. However, this was only very much a subsidiary part of the complaint and, in substance, the complainant has failed. Accordingly the complainant is not entitled to costs."
moral injury; no award of costs