Published: 00:01, 23 June 2014 |
A Canterbury couple squirrelled away a £50,000 windfall... and then lied to claim nearly £24,000 in benefits.
Now Owen and Kathleen Linkins have been told they have two weeks to stump up the cash out of their secret inheritance.
The pair of fraudsters later claimed they had “forgotten” about the money that they received in 2007 before they began claiming state handouts.
“As I understand it, their offer of repayment forms a substantial part of their mitigation and I am rather surprised to find that none of the money has been repaid" - Judge Simon James
Prosecutor James Ross told the court: “These were claims which were dishonest from the start. Mr Linkins made a claim for employment and support allowance in March 2009.
“He was asked to certify if he had more than £6,000 in his account. He said his capital was in the region of £384, but in reality the capital was in the region of nearer £60,000.
"He then claimed for 74 weeks until March 2011.
“Mrs Linkins, who had received the inheritance in 2007, then began claiming a week later.
"She said the total amount of savings the couple had was £700. So as soon as one claim ended the other was started", he added.
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