Stevenage benefit fraudster falsely claimed more than £9,000
- Credit: Archant
A benefit fraudster from Stevenage who falsely claimed more than £9,000 has been ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid community work.
David Chell, of Almonds Lane, falsely claimed £8,429.41 in housing benefit and £602.41 in council tax support between April 2016 and June last year.
The 50-year-old pleaded guilty to housing benefit fraud and council tax fraud when he appeared at Stevenage Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday last week.
The bench ordered him to pay costs and complete 200 hours of unpaid community work.
Councillor Joan Lloyd, who is responsible for resources at Stevenage Borough Council, said afterwards: “Our resources are scarce, and welfare benefits are precious public resources.
You may also want to watch:
“People who try to cheat the system in this way are depriving others who really need this support.”
The court heard that in September 2017, officers from the Hertfordshire Shared Anti-Fraud Service and the Department for Work and Pensions started an investigation when it was found that Chell – who had been claiming housing benefit and reductions in his council tax from Stevenage Borough Council, due to his low income – had a bank account with more than £28,000 in it, when the capital limit was £16,000.
- 1 Man arrested on suspicion of harassment after Stevenage and Preston incidents
- 2 Who is Slove? Spate of Stevenage graffiti prompts police appeal
- 3 Pictured: The first pints, haircuts, swims and more as lockdown restrictions ease
- 4 Have you seen missing man from Stevenage?
- 5 What can I do and what opens when COVID lockdown rules ease on Monday, April 12?
- 6 Stevenage's play areas set to reopen for first time in months
- 7 Inside the breathtaking £2.6million historic house that has its own 'party barn'
- 8 Former Hitchin and Stevenage MP Shirley Williams dies aged 90
- 9 Drive-in cinema arriving at London Luton Airport
- 10 All change at Arlesey Town as chairman John Morrell is replaced by former Premier League striker
Enquires with the bank where the money was deposited confirmed it was held in accounts in Chell’s name and that he had held the capital since April 2016. Chell had never declared this money to Stevenage Borough Council, and continued to claim benefits until June 2017.
At an interview under caution on November 28 last year, Chell admitted that he had received a payment following an ombudsman hearing and that he realised that he should have declared this to the borough council.
The Shared Anti-Fraud Service works in partnership with Stevenage Borough Council to investigate and prosecute allegations of fraud against the many services delivered by the council.
You can report suspected fraud against any of Hertfordshire’s borough, district or county councils at hertsdirect.org/reportfraud, by emailing email@example.com, or by calling 0300 123 4033.