Student loan body hunts for cheats

Student loan body hunts for cheats
Photo: IT University in Kista/Image Bank Sweden (file)
Sweden's student loan authority (Centrala studiestödsnämnden, CSN) has expanded its search for those who cheat the system, after an investigation showed that a large number of people had been lent money to which they were not entitled.

A review of 4,500 students showed that 1,500 or a third of the total had wrongly been lent money. CSN says it expects to report 145 cases of suspected fraud to the police. The errors cost 15 million kronor ($1.97 million).

The investigation is now being expanded to 30,000 people who studied full-time for at least 20 weeks in 2009 .

When all full-time students have been checked, it is estimated that the sum will have risen to between 50 and 100 million kronor. A significant source of fraud is students who claim loans for full-time study, but are not registered at university full-time.

“It is serious that we have given money to the wrong students,” said Klas Elfving, press secretary at CSN.

“However, we grant a total of 23 billion kronor each year, so we do not think fraud is especially prevalent if you look at the big picture.”

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