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Btl Scammers Escape Jail

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1311035/85-000-benefit-cheats-FOUR-homes-admit-fraud-escape-jail.html

A couple who claimed £85,000 in benefits despite owning three houses, a holiday home, three cars and five plasma TVs escaped jail yesterday.

Emily Morris and Kevin Wraith cheated the system for five years but were given suspended sentences yesterday after admitting fraud.

Morris, a mother of four, had told the authorities she was a single mother despite living with gas engineer Wraith.

Their scam came to an end when Havering Council fraud investigators accompanied by police raided their home last year, after discovering an elaborate web of properties on buy-to-let mortgages and benefit claims.

Inside the couple’s rented home in Hornchurch, Essex, officers discovered a lavish games room with a full-size pool table and expensive jewellery, games consoles and TVs.

There were three cars on the drive, one with personalised number plates.

Wraith also owned four properties in Essex – one in Romford which he bought with a mortgage of £185,000, one in Chadwell Heath with a mortgage of £128,500, one in Dagenham bought for £120,000 and a fourth in Harwich for £130,000.

The couple had a holiday caravan worth £13,995 in Clacton-on-Sea and enjoyed numerous foreign holidays.

Their fraud began when Wraith, 30, bought the home in Romford but struggled to pay the mortgage without tenants.

His friend Morris, 34, agreed to move in and the pair concocted a plan where she would pay no rent, but claim housing benefit which would be put towards the mortgage.

When tenants for the home were found Morris moved but continued to claim benefits, eventually moving in with Wraith.

The 34-year-old had two children with him, adding to two from a previous relationship.

Her failure to declare her circumstances meant she was overpaid housing and council tax benefit worth £47,013 between 9 May 2005 and 5 October 2009.

The Department of Work and Pensions also overpaid her £31,046 in income support and she also received £7,320 too much in child tax credits.

Sentencing them at Basildon Crown Court Judge Alice Robinson said: ‘This is an extremely serious offence. Contrary to popular belief, it is not a victimless crime.

‘Every tax-paying member of the public is a victim – they have to pay for the benefits that you fraudulently took.’

Edited by exiges

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Not enough room in the jails for such 'petty' offences.

Just wait 'till the cuts really start to bite, an increased number of the population are pulling strokes and the numbers of poleese are reduced these 'petty' offences won't even be on the radar for poleese or press.

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This is not a scam, it is fraud.

...it's probably going on all around ....wonder how good the lenders are in this money laundering style scam.....?....suggest they should be investigated also.... :rolleyes:

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Crime pays.

Too true; but benefits pay even better. Overpaid by £85,000 in four years. I wonder what taxpayer's overall bill was during that time for this woman's lifestyle choices.

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So tell me that at least they had to sell one of the houses or cars to pay back the money?

...or does the taxpayer pay for their negative equity while they get off with a soft suspended..... :rolleyes:

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...or does the taxpayer pay for their negative equity while they get off with a soft suspended..... :rolleyes:

AND...

have they stopped the benefits?....nah, thats probly another department...out of the loop and in a meeting.

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What's the story behind the Daily Mail's obsession with plasma TVs :lol:

For the frumpy middle aged woman who is your typical daily mail reader watching the shopping channel on a big plasma is the height of sophistication.

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For the frumpy middle aged woman who is your typical daily mail reader watching the shopping channel on a big plasma is the height of sophistication.

....obviously sophistication for benefit fiddlers also......fiddle for a plasma..... :rolleyes:

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Surely this is just half of the article,

They must have received some financial penalties, and seizure of assets. Please tell me they were not allowed to keep their ill gotten gains.

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it may be cruel, but i think it is time that someone made an example of such cheaters,

and threw the book a them, and held them truly accountable for their misdeeds

I completely agree. Take a small proportion of offenders and punish them severely and you'll discourage the vast majority from risking a similar fate. Impose custodial sentences, seize their assets and bar them from future benefits. There is no need for expensive monitoring that result in nothing more than a slap on the wrist. Such an approach would transform many aspects of British society, from benefit cheats to MP expenses fiddles. It would not dramatically increase the prison population and it would mean the need for significantly fewer bureaucrats to administer discredited systems. Would save a fortune at almost no cost.

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it may be cruel, but i think it is time that someone made an example of such cheaters,

and threw the book a them, and held them truly accountable for their misdeeds

...the cruelty is that it is our money ....don't worry about them....they don't worry about you.... :rolleyes:

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