THE former deputy chief executive of a leading West Yorkshire regeneration charity has ben arrested on suspicion of fraud.
Bosses at award-winning community body Bradford Trident have insisted they are proceeding with their work aiding regeneration in the city following the arrest of 33-year-old Zubare Kahn, who had worked at the organisation for several years before his sudden departure last month.
A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police confirmed that a 33-year-old man has been arrested and bailed on suspicion of fraud and that an investigation is ongoing.
Trident chief executive Mick Binns told the Yorkshire Post he was restricted in what he could say, but that his organisation – which has received £50m in Government funds over the past decade – was not in danger.
“I found something and things have come to a head very quickly,” he said. “It is being dealt with.
“It is very unfortunate but we are moving forward positively as an organisation.
“The message I want to get out is that this is not affecting our business. We are not in trouble.”
Bradford Trident was set up 12 years ago as a community-owned charity, providing services to improve life in Park Lane, Marshfield and West Bowling. It has won a string of national awards and was praised by the National Audit Office as an “excellent” example of where the national New Deal for Communities programme was working well. The programme ended last year, but Trident has continued to operate.
Last month it was chosen by the Government to run a new pilot project aimed at saving billions of pounds. Ministers hope the “Community Budgets” scheme will transform the way local services are delivered to communities.
In December the Yorkshire Post revealed a former finance officer of Bradford Trident is taking the charity to an employment tribunal after alleging he was forced out amidst an atmosphere of bullying, racism, harassment and intimidation.
Iqbal Patel, was made redundant in September after four-and-half years with the organisation. He says he was the subject of a “witch hunt”.
Trident denies the allegations.