‘King Of Absentees’ Skipped Work For 15 Years, Collected Paychecks In Italy

(Photo by Alfonso Di Vincenzo. Getty Images)

Melanie Wilcox Contributor
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A hospital employee in Italy continued to receive a salary despite missing work for 15 years, Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata (ANSA), an Italian publication, reported Tuesday.

The Italian press calls the man, now 67, the “King of Absentees.” Since 2005, he received a total of €538,000, or the equivalent of $647,000, from the Pugliese Ciaccio hospital in Catanzaro, according to ANSA, which is located in the southern part of Italy. (RELATED: After Calling It An ‘Editing Mistake,’ CBSN Goes Right Ahead And Runs The Same Misleading Italian Hospital Footage)

A view of the Arnaldo Pugliese Ciaccio Hospital in Catanzaro. (Photo by Alfonso Di Vincenzo. Getty)

The police are investigating the man, who was a civil servant, and six managers who allegedly played a role in his absenteeism, at the hospital for fraud, abuse and extortion. In an investigation codenamed Part Time, police gathered attendance and salary records, The Guardian reported. They found he threatened his manager so she would not file a report against him. After his manager retired, her successor and human resources did not notice his absence, according to the police.

The Italian government revisited a law and strengthened it in 2016 after several police investigations discovered that people missing work in Italy’s public sector is widespread, The Guardian reported. A police officer who resided in the same building as his post, for example, was reportedly filmed clocking in while wearing his underwear and returning to his bed.