West Virginia forms anti-fraud team

David Dew and David Phillips have successfully completed Certified Fraud Examiner training administered by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. (Photo Provided)

CHARLESTON — The West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety is assembling a team of anti-fraud specialists.

David Dew and David Phillips have successfully completed Certified Fraud Examiner training administered by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.

The association is the world’s largest anti-fraud organization and provider of anti-fraud training and education. A certified fraud examiner is a specialist with expertise in fraud prevention, detection and deterrence.

“Overall this was a great opportunity to broaden my skillset and become a certified fraud examiner,” said Dew. “I hope to help the public, companies, and organizations of West Virginia by assisting them in detecting fraud through investigations and preventing fraud through consulting.”

Dew is the chief financial officer and deputy director of the Division of Administrative Services. Phillips is a 14-year veteran of what is now the Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation, where he is an internal auditor.

They underwent training this summer in Chicago and received their certification last week. The training focused on four key topics: investigations; the law; financial transactions and fraud schemes; and fraud prevention and deterrence.

“The instructors were very knowledgeable and had real-life examples to help explain the material being covered,” Phillips said. “In my opinion, the training course was beneficial because of the diverse educational backgrounds of the attendees.”

Phillips earned a bachelor’s from Fairmont State University in business administration with a major in accounting and management. Dew has a master’s in business administration from Marshall University and a bachelor’s of science in business administration with a concentration in accounting from the University of Phoenix.

The department’s goal is to field eight certified fraud examiners by the end of this fiscal year, to aid investigations and the department’s overall mission, said Cabinet Secretary Jeff Sandy. Dew and Phillips join Sandy and Deputy Director Steven Patterson of the state Intelligence Fusion Center as department certified fraud examiners.

“We saw a need for the state to be proactive verses reactive in many areas of risk to the state,” Sandy said. “It is better to know the past history of an individual and business prior to them working or conducting business with the state. Our goal is simple; to reduce the financial risk to the state.”

Department investigations include the recent review of the Huntington Fire Department and the condition of a fire truck and boat. The findings showed the maintenance issues were not the result of criminal activity, and recommended ways for the department to run more efficiently.

“We came upon an invaluable resource that I was unaware of,” Mayor Steve Williams said. “Secretary Sandy assembled a professional team that was highly credible to help us assess the reasons behind the problems we were experiencing. The investigative team was professional, deliberate, and resourceful. As a result, we were able to identify the problem, fix it, and proceed forward.”