Search

Couple in their 70s guilty of £140,000 benefit fraud including claim in Brentwood

07:00 09 May 2014

A couple in their 70s have received suspended sentences after pleading guilty to falsely claiming more than £140,000 in benefits.

The married couple falsely claimed benefits while failing to declare they were living together, and had an undeclared property in Brentwood.

Raymond and Georgina Wood, 79 and 75, of Grantham, Lincolnshire, pleaded guilty to a total of 23 charges at Basildon Crown Court.

Mrs Wood had falsely claimed Council Tax Benefit from Brentwood Borough Council.

The couple were given a 12-month custodial sentence suspended for two years at the trial that concluded on April 29.

The charges included dishonestly making false statements in order to obtain benefits, failing to notify changes of circumstances, retaining wrongful credits, fraud, as well as aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring another to commit the offence.

Mrs Wood had £16,000 in undeclared capital and also had a property in Basildon which she did not tell the authorities about.

In sentencing, the judge stressed that he took benefit fraud seriously due to its effect on public funds and that it made it more difficult for people legitimately claiming benefits but he gave credit to the pair for their guilty pleas and their age.

Rick Steels, Brentwood Borough Council’s benefits chief, said: “This was a complex case involving different locations over a number of years. It also showed the effective joint working between Brentwood, Basildon and South Kesteven Councils and the DWP.

“The council is determined to crack down on fraudulent claims, particularly as they are unfair to hardworking taxpayers and those who genuinely need the benefits system to work for them. Benefit fraud is illegal and those who cheat the system will be prosecuted and will have to pay back what they have stolen.”

Read more:

Benefits cheat sentenced to community service after illegally claiming more than £2,400 from Brentwood Council

Brentwood benefits cheat must return taxpayers money

0 comments

Comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Romford Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Romford Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Romford Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest News Stories

14:35
Police want to speak to this man after a couple were tricked into giving £24,000 to fraudsters. Picture: Essex Police

Pensioners conned out of thousands purchased a Rolex watch as part of an elaborate scam.

David Dimbleby will be joined by five guests

Comedian Jo Brand, former education secretary Michael Gove and shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna will be among Question Time panellists when the show comes to Harold Hill tomorrow.

16:10
Harold Wood Cricket Club in Mallorca

Tom Clarke from the Harold Wood Cricket Club writes about their recent trip to Mallorca.

Brownies and their leaders outside London World Centre

Although winter is approaching it doesn’t stop our girls from getting out and about!

Most read news

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

News from your area

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Romford Recorder e-edition today E-edition

The NHS have introduced a new pill for those who struggle to screw the lid back on that bottle of wine.

Today the doctor has received an eight-year sentence for a string of offences.

£300 a day sounds like a pretty good allowance – but this guy was claiming it without doing ANY work.

Protests have taken place in 170 cities across the US since news broke that Darren Wilson, Mike Brown’s killer, won’t face charges.