Philadelphia treasurer charged with embezzlement, entering sham marriage

Philadelphia’s treasurer was fired Friday after federal authorities charged him with embezzlement and entering into a sham marriage to obtain US citizenship.

Although the allegations against Christian Dunbar did not involve his work with the city, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said that he had asked the city’s inspector general to review the treasurer’s office during Dunbar’s tenure beginning in 2016, the Associated Press reported.

“This review can help resolve any concerns about the office´s conduct and transactions during this period,” Kenney said.

Federal prosecutors said that Dunbar, 40, stole $15,000 from two of his clients while working at Wells Fargo as a financial adviser, before he began working in city government. In both instances, he was assisting customers who wanted to transfer funds and had them sign several documents, including a blank withdrawal slip.

He later allegedly used the blank slips to withdraw cash from both victims’ accounts and deposit those funds into his own bank account, prosecutors said.

Dunbar, who was born in Liberia, where his maternal grandfather William Tubman was president for three decades. He allegedly entered into a fake marriage with a former classmate at Temple University, prosecutors said.

During his marriage, he secretly wed another classmate in a ceremony in the bride’s home country in Senegal in 2013, according to the indictment, which also alleges that the woman entered into her own shame marriage to obtain permanent residency status in the US. After he became a US citizen, he divorced his first wife in 2016, prosecutors said.

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