Council bosses in Birmingham are confident of recovering most of the £1 million stolen from the social services department by a suspected illegal immigrant.
John Kaduwanema, a Ugandan national, syphoned off the money during the two years he was employed as a City Council finance manager.
His offences went undetected until Barclays Bank contacted the council and raised questions about a transaction of local authority cash.
Kaduwanema (27), who lives in Cannock, pleaded guilty at Birmingham Crown Court last month to ten c harges of dishonestly obtaining money by transfers from the council between May 2005 and February 2006. He asked for a further 14 offences to be taken into consideration.
He is due to be sentenced later this month.
Council lawyers have embarked upon legal action in an attempt to distrain property and assets belonging to Kaduwanema, according to Birmingham cabinet member for equalities and human resources Alan Rudge.
"We are entitled to recover our money and a number of measures are being pursued," Coun Rudge (Con Sutton Vesey) said.
The council has lodged an application under the Proceeds of Crime Act to obtain several properties and cars believed to be owned by Kaduwanema.
Coun Rudge said: "A successful application has been made to distrain a significant sum of cash and three properties with a valuation of just under £1 million. These matters will be considered at the end of the criminal proceedings. The person's pension has also been frozen and a claim lodged with the city council's insurers."
Kaduwanema arrived in Britain on student visa which ran out some time ago, Birmingham Crown Court was told. His £25,000 job with the social services finance unit gave him direct access to public money.
A council spokeswoman said the local authority followed regulations as they existed at the time when it appointed Kaduwanema. Appropriate action had been taken to ensure a similar event could not happen again.