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Home Sheerness News Article
A benefits cheat claimed £25,000 after failing to notify officials that his partner had moved in with him.
Gary Roberts, of Silverdale Avenue, Minster, defrauded Swale council of £13,543 of housing benefit, £1,810 of council tax benefit and £9,075 of job seekers allowance and other benefits.
The Department for Work and Pensions established the fraud on July 4 last year after routine employment checks were made to his partner’s employer and other agencies.
The resulting investigation covered the period December 2010 to July 2013.
After pleading guilty at Maidstone Magistrates’ Court on March 6, Roberts was sentenced to a 12-month community service order, a four month curfew order from 8pm to 6am and six sessions in Employment, Training and Education over 730 days.
The 57-year-old was also ordered to pay £85 costs.
Swale council says it will also seek recovery of the overpaid benefit.
Cllr Duncan Dewar-Whalley, cabinet member for finance said: “This case highlights the importance of reporting changes in circumstances promptly to avoid large overpayments and the possibility of a criminal conviction.
“We will not tolerate fraudulent behaviour and will take every step possible to ensure that benefits are only received by those who need them.”
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