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Benefit Fraudster Gets Suspended Sentence

Wednesday May 8 2013

Benefits cheat escapes prison sentence Benefits cheat escapes prison sentence

A BARNSLEY benefit fraudster who failed to tell the authorities he had inherited more than £30,000 has escaped an immediate prison term. 

David Harrison, 45, inherited £33,236 after the death of his father but failed to tell the Department for Work and Pensions and continued to claim income support, council tax and housing benefit. 

He made his first claim in 1993 and continued to claim until 2009 - receiving £18,623 in benefits. 

Rebecca Stevens, defending Harrison, said it was a particularly tragic case because Mr Harrison’s wife had died when their sons were one and five and he was left to bring them up on his own. 

“He struggled to deal with the death of his partner and when his dad died, all his emotions came flooding back and he didn’t deal very well with either,” she said.

Judge Alan Goldsack QC sentenced him to 16 weeks in prison, suspended for a year and 80 hours of unpaid work for the community.

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Reply Posted by angie on Thursday May 9 2013 at 10:13
its disgusting people doing this they deserve more

Reply Posted by Me on Wednesday May 15 2013 at 10:34
So if this man had just inherited the same amount of benefit per week would it be wrong to still claim?? This money from his father (that had already been taxed) had been left to son to enjoy, and not to pay the bills!! Exactly the same as the people who retire with an healthy pension, they get state pension too..

Reply Posted by stevo on Wednesday May 15 2013 at 19:30
My sentiments exactly, all inheritance should not be counted in any way, shape or form irrespective of if the beneficiary is claiming benefits or not.
His father will have probably worked all his life and if he would have gone in a care home the government would have nicked all his assets anyway.

Although it does have to be said, if I would have been in the same situation, I would have ensured I would have "got rid" of a large proportion of the money to make sure that I was under the "threshold" to claim benefits.
Hey, if its good enough for Starbucks, Amazon, Ebay etc then its good enough for the average man in the street.