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Officials accused of failing to spot De Lorean fund abuse

A report released Wednesday by a House of Commons committee accused British officials of failing to check a ''shocking misappropriation'' of funds by American automaker John De Lorean at a government-assisted factory in Belfast.

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The report by the Public Accounts Committee alleged that about $10.5 million earmarked for development of Mr. De Lorean's gull-winged sports car was apparently diverted for other purposes.

De Lorean, a former General Motors vice-president, set up the Belfast plant in 1978, aided by $101.64 million of British taxpayers' money allocated over several years by authorities trying to ease strife-torn Northern Ireland's high unemployment.

The plant closed Oct. 19, 1982, the same day De Lorean was arrested in Los Angeles on drug charges.