Chronological list of events surrounding CESSMAQ and the misappropriation of funds.
September 2010: Guatemala Partnership Team (GPT) members, Bryan Anderson, Rob Mueller and Bob Yarbrough, traveled to Guatemala to re-new the CESSMAQ/Mission Presbytery (MP) charter.
1. While there we were informed by Noe Sam Yac that he had not been paid in 2010.
2. This prompted an investigation into what happened to funds that were sent to CESSMAQ.
3. GPT requested a report for MP on all wire transfers to CESSMAQ over the period 2009 through 2010.
4. March 2011 Bob Yarbrough was contacted by Kirk of Kildare PC in Cary NC sharing that they too had questions about missing funds being sent to CESSMAQ. Teleconference between GPT members Bryan Anderson, Rob Mueller and Bob Yarbrough and Kirk of Kildare members Hal Jordan and Virginia Anthony was held to discuss this and plans on what to do next. It was suggested that an audit be done of the CESSMAQ books. Virginia Anthony had information that funds had been stolen by the Secretary and used for personal issues.
5. An audit firm from Guatemala City Guatemala was commissioned to do an audit of the CESSMAQ books. Audit to start in May 2010. Heartland Presbytery, Kirk of Kildare and GPT all agreed to fund the audit in that we all had a stake in the outcome.
6. Report received that all requested wire transfers of GPT funds to CESSMAQ had been done and had been received by the bank in Guatemala. CESSMAQ was working with the bank to find when the monies had been received and who signed for them.
7. June 2011 The audit was completed and presented to the Maya Quiche Presbytery (MQP) (sponsor of CESSMAQ) by the audit firm. The executive presbyter sent an email to Bryan Anderson, Rob Mueller and Edward Esparza. They have accepted the results of the audit and are working on the legal issues. Bryan Anderson was provided a copy of the audit. Once translated it was confirmed that the Secretary/book-keeper of CESSMAQ had embezzled a large amount of money for personal gain and had misappropriated other money to cover her actions. She was immediately terminated by MQP. MQP has informed the GPT that they have agreed to have the secretary make restitution of a small amount of the money stolen.
8. GPT notified MQP that the dismissal of Noe Sam as director of CESSMAQ was not received favorably. We also informed them that not seeking further action against the secretary was unsatisfactory. MQP’s actions to sanction the members of CESSMAQ and to relieve them all of their duties and the assigning of a new CESSAMQ committee was approved by the GPT. It was further noted that MQP would be writing new rules and regulations governing the actions of CESSMAQ and as a fail-safe to having a re-occurrence of this awful situation. The GPT met with the EP for Mission Presbytery as part of the ongoing sharing of information and status of our investigation.
9. GPT has asked MQP for the list of names of the CESSMAQ and a copy of the new guidelines. We have also further emphasized our disagreement with MQP’s decision to remove Noe Sam Yac as director of CESSMAQ. The audit revealed that he had nothing to do with the missing money and that his job description prevented him from having anything to do with money handling. Job discriptions of the CESMAQ President and Treasurer authorize only them to receive and disperse funds donated to CESSMAQ. The audit revealed that both the President and Treasurer relied on thier trust of the book-keeper to dispese funds without a review of proper use of the funds. The GPT, as a fail-safe, has also requested that an independent professional book-keeping firm be hired to handle the CESSMAQ books as we move forward.
10. Until MQP responds to our requests and shows good faith in continuing our partnership we have suspended all dealings. All monies currently held by MP for the Guatemala Partnership will be held in the bank till such time as we re-establish partnership work with MQP/CESSMAQ.