Breaking: Italy’s absentee health worker receives pay for 15 years

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A hospital employee described as the “king of absentees” by the Italian press is said to have broken the national record by allegedly skipping work for 15 years.

The man, 67, described in Italian media reports as the “king of absentees”, allegedly stopped showing up for work in 2005 at the Pugliese Ciaccio hospital in Catanzaro, southern Italy.

In an investigation codenamed Part Time, police gathered their evidence from attendance and salary records as well as witness statements from colleagues. In 2005, the man is alleged to have made threats against the hospital director to stop her from filing a disciplinary report over his absenteeism.

The director then retired and the man’s absenteeism continued unabated because his attendance was never checked by the director’s successor or the human resources department, police said.

He was reportedly paid €538,000 (£464,000) in total over the following 15 years.He is now being investigated for fraud, extortion and abuse of office, according to Italian news agency Ansa.Six managers at the hospital are also under investigation in connection with his alleged absenteeism.

In 2016 the government tightened a law against the workshy after several high-profile police investigations revealed just how rampant absenteeism was across the public sector.

In one investigation, police used secret surveillance cameras to ensnare 35 workers at Sanremo’s town hall who had been cheating the time management system for at least two years. The wives of two of the employees were caught using their husband’s staff cards to clock on for them, while other staff members clocked on before going canoeing, shopping or out with friends.



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