Thornaby man said to be responsible for substantial and lengthy benefit fraud

The Northern Echo: Scaffolder given six month jail sentence for £46k benefit fraud Scaffolder given six month jail sentence for £46k benefit fraud

A SCAFFOLDER who fraudently claimed more than £46,000 worth of benefits while working offshore has been jailed for six months.

Keith Brown was said by a judge to be responsible for persistent and lengthy offences of benefit fraud over several years.

Teesside Crown Court was told the 56-year-old began legitimately claiming benefits in 2003 after suffering a brain tumour.

However, he recovered enough to work with three different employers – during which he continued to claim benefit he was not entitled to and without alerting the authorities to his change in circumstances.

Between 2007 and last year Brown claimed £28,009 in Disability Living Allowance, £9,198 in Employment Support Allowance payments, £6,897 in housing and council tax benefit and £1,917 in incapacity benefit.

Brown, of Salisbury Street, Thornaby, Teesside, admitted four counts of benefit fraud.

Peter Wishlade, mitigating, said: “This has been an extremely salutory lesson for him. He is remorseful and accepts what he was doing is entirely wrong.”

Mr Wishlade said Brown was repaying £50 per fortnight from the fraudulent claim and tried to persuade Judge Peter Armstrong that a suspended jail sentence would be appropriate.

But Judge Armstrong said jailing him immediately for six months would be a punishment for him and a deterrent to others.

“It is the least sentence I can pass for such a substantial fraud," he added.

He told Brown: “These offences were thoroughly dishonest. You continued to claim over a lengthy period, ending up with a substantial amount of money being paid to you.”

Comments (7)

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1:04pm Fri 25 Apr 14

reasoned view says...

Lets hope the thieving scumbag lives till he is 91. Thats the 35yrs it will take to repay at this derisory amount. A waste of a white skin, and an oxygen thief
Lets hope the thieving scumbag lives till he is 91. Thats the 35yrs it will take to repay at this derisory amount. A waste of a white skin, and an oxygen thief reasoned view
  • Score: 1

2:43pm Fri 25 Apr 14

RealLivin says...

Why wait his possessions should be confiscated, ie house car, TV, phones, etc, and auctioned to pay back the benefits plus costs, plus any fines and then jailed for fraud, not six months 10 years. Make sure its not worth doing in the first place, this will stop others
Why wait his possessions should be confiscated, ie house car, TV, phones, etc, and auctioned to pay back the benefits plus costs, plus any fines and then jailed for fraud, not six months 10 years. Make sure its not worth doing in the first place, this will stop others RealLivin
  • Score: 3

3:56pm Fri 25 Apr 14

stevegg says...

Benefit fraud costs taxpayers an estimated 2 Billion pounds every year according to government figures, in all likely hood its probably double that at least. Talk to most people and they all know of someone on the fiddle. The counter fraud team are only scratching the surface of benefit fraud and have not got the resources to tackle this widescale abuse with any significance. The only way to stop fraud is to make harsh penalities (recovering and selling all financial assetts, barring claiming convicted benefits claimants for life and long meaningful jail sentances) and having strict controls on who can access benefits. For the last 50 years its been a freeforall which has exploited by millions of fecklass individuals with the balance of power being in the recipients favour which is why its been exploited. The tide is now slowly turning in favour of the taxpayer but nowhere near fast enough.
Benefit fraud costs taxpayers an estimated 2 Billion pounds every year according to government figures, in all likely hood its probably double that at least. Talk to most people and they all know of someone on the fiddle. The counter fraud team are only scratching the surface of benefit fraud and have not got the resources to tackle this widescale abuse with any significance. The only way to stop fraud is to make harsh penalities (recovering and selling all financial assetts, barring claiming convicted benefits claimants for life and long meaningful jail sentances) and having strict controls on who can access benefits. For the last 50 years its been a freeforall which has exploited by millions of fecklass individuals with the balance of power being in the recipients favour which is why its been exploited. The tide is now slowly turning in favour of the taxpayer but nowhere near fast enough. stevegg
  • Score: 2

5:17pm Fri 25 Apr 14

Jeff1234 says...

Wow RealLivin that is quite a lofty moral pedestal you live on, careful you don't fall off.
Wow RealLivin that is quite a lofty moral pedestal you live on, careful you don't fall off. Jeff1234
  • Score: -1

6:16pm Fri 25 Apr 14

behonest says...

RealLivin wrote:
Why wait his possessions should be confiscated, ie house car, TV, phones, etc, and auctioned to pay back the benefits plus costs, plus any fines and then jailed for fraud, not six months 10 years. Make sure its not worth doing in the first place, this will stop others
Yeah, he stole nearly as much as Labour MP Margaret Moran (£53,000), but she walked free from court. But then she's part of the Establishment, not some working class scaffolder scumbag...
[quote][p][bold]RealLivin[/bold] wrote: Why wait his possessions should be confiscated, ie house car, TV, phones, etc, and auctioned to pay back the benefits plus costs, plus any fines and then jailed for fraud, not six months 10 years. Make sure its not worth doing in the first place, this will stop others[/p][/quote]Yeah, he stole nearly as much as Labour MP Margaret Moran (£53,000), but she walked free from court. But then she's part of the Establishment, not some working class scaffolder scumbag... behonest
  • Score: 4

7:24pm Fri 25 Apr 14

Brianzim says...

He seems as consonance with other Tax thieves. Why treat him as a special case? This is where the British Law System is so Lax. A Butcher (of people) would, with the right Lawyer get off with an apology from the Bench and little else. If he thieves from the People, why not let the People "Cast the First Stone"? However, the People may need to be educated in Tax Law, both from whence it comes and where it is supposed to go!
Sorry, I could go on, but I do need to make my evening Repast. The plonk is fine but I need some solid stuff to use to wash down with it!! God Bless till next time.
He seems as consonance with other Tax thieves. Why treat him as a special case? This is where the British Law System is so Lax. A Butcher (of people) would, with the right Lawyer get off with an apology from the Bench and little else. If he thieves from the People, why not let the People "Cast the First Stone"? However, the People may need to be educated in Tax Law, both from whence it comes and where it is supposed to go! Sorry, I could go on, but I do need to make my evening Repast. The plonk is fine but I need some solid stuff to use to wash down with it!! God Bless till next time. Brianzim
  • Score: -2

9:26am Sun 27 Apr 14

Davy Crocket says...

A woman in York got 40 hours community service last week for a £20,000 Benefit Fraud. Disgusting.
A woman in York got 40 hours community service last week for a £20,000 Benefit Fraud. Disgusting. Davy Crocket
  • Score: 0

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