The facts were released on Friday of the decision of the court of the sub-district court in Amsterdam. He had to decide on a case that Slutter filed against his dismissal. Slutter was only partially right. The judge allowed the labor contract to be dissolved on December 1.
Slutter had previously been an accountant at KPMG for many years, and Meijer was the managing director of the Port of Amsterdam for seven years. Last March, they were suspended after the fraud was discovered by the French parent company. Meijer had only one year in the service of the film company. Pathé has 28 cinemas as the largest film operator in the Netherlands.
The sophisticated fraud game began on March 8, 2018 with an email to Meijer that allegedly came from the chief man of the controlling company of Pathé. Then the email came from a fake email address. The first visible email address ended on pathe.com, but there was a different address. The correspondence said, "Hi, were you contacted by Mr. (…) of KPMG this morning?" ("Hello, Mr. KPMG contacted you?")
Meijer, through his assistant, asked his chief financial officer, Slutter, if he knew anything about it. Slutter said that was not the case. Then there was an e-mail exchange between Meijer and the fraudster, who then sent him a copy of Pathé's bank account.
On the same day, the false CEO announced that he needed Meijers to help in acquiring a company based in Dubai. "The transaction must remain strictly confidential. No one else should be aware of what is happening in our business." ("The transaction must remain strictly confidential and no one should be aware of this so that we have an advantage over the competition.") ).
The request was to make a deposit of € 826,521 in the company of the Netherlands. The fake senior man instructed Meijer to send an e-mail to the so-called KPMG employee, who was also in the conspiracy, to ask what account number the value had to be transferred.
Part of the secret was that Meijer would not phone the CEO or other people involved. "My personal email is the only form of communication," the request said. She insisted, with fatal consequences. Also her financial man, Slutter, whom she closely involved in the case, exposed with open eyes. Even if Meijer was not sure. "Weird is not it?" She sent it to Slutter.
After the first amount, another € 2,479,563 was transferred at the request of the top man & # 39; on March 13 this year. After several tranches, the fraudsters released a total of € 19,244,304 from the Netherlands.
On March 28, the false CEO solemnly promised Meijer that he would return the amount withdrawn in an orderly manner. "On the same day, questions about the amounts requested came from France," according to the sub district court report. "During a telephone consultation the same day, it became clear that Pathé had become a victim of the so-called CEO fraud." That means a fraud in which the con man pretends to be somebody's boss.
Both Pathé directors were almost immediately put out of business by the French company Les Cinémas Gaumont Pathé.
According to a research report of the company's investigation, which the sub-district court cites, "it was not shown that these people were aware of the fraud. Pathé appears to have become the target of a professional gang of fraudsters, who through refined communication gained the confidence of some Pathé employees. "