Tory MP in benefit fraud claims despite anti-welfare votes

Tue, 25/02/2014 - 12:43 -- nick

Tory MP Peter Bone has been accused of benefit fraud in a report in The Times newspaper.

The MP for Wellingborough and Rushden was alleged to have hidden assets belonging to his mother-in-law, Dorothy Sweeney, so her local authority, Northamptonshire County Council, would fund her care home costs.

Anyone who has assets of more than £23,250, including property and savings, must pay for their own care.

Police raided Bone's house after a year-long investigation, triggered after they became aware that Sweeney had sold a house shortly before going into a care home.

New benefit fraud campaign targets tiny part of UK unnecessarily

Fri, 03/01/2014 - 14:21 -- nick

The government is today launching a new anti-fraud and error campaign - but in just six small areas of the UK.

The chosen few - Southwark, Blackburn, Hounslow, Blackpool, Epping Forest and Cardiff - will be targeted with billboards, newspaper adverts, Facebook adverts and letters to claimants.

These will ask claimants to report changes in their circumstances and also ask all citizens to shop those they believe are claiming benefits fraudulently.

Minister for Welfare Reform Lord Freud said:

Nine A4e employees charge with fraud offences

Fri, 27/09/2013 - 12:48 -- nick

Nine employees of under-fire employment services company A4e have been charged with fraud after allegedly faking evidence of jobs to get payments from the public purse.

The "numerous" offences were alleged to have taken place over four years between 2009 and 2013.

The company holds multiple government contracts including under the government's flagship Work Programme, but the court case relates to the "Inspire to Aspire" employment and training scheme.

Benefit fraudsters could get up to ten years in jail

Mon, 16/09/2013 - 13:42 -- nick

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has announced an increase in maximum jail terms for those convicted of benefit and tax credit fraud.

Despite its rarity - only 0.7% of welfare payments are lost to fraud - the Director of Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer, says that it is time for a "tough stance".

The fact that fraud has been getting rarer suggests both that the change is unnecessary, and that it has been prompted by the government and newspapers' increasingly hard line on all benefits.

DWP website now officially a tabloid newspaper

Mon, 26/08/2013 - 13:23 -- nick

The Department for Work and Pensions press site has crossed the line between information provision and tabloid-style reporting.

It has published a press release titled 'Drag artist jailed for benefit fraud' - days after most media outlets picked it up - on the case of Mark Hawthorne, a 49 year old from Staffordshire.

Level of benefit fraud and error unchanged last year

Thu, 09/05/2013 - 15:23 -- nick

Benefit fraud and error was unchanged at 0.7% of all payments last year, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has confirmed.

In total £3.5 billion was overpaid in 2012-13, of which £1.2 billion was due to fraud and twice as much, £2.3 billion, was due to error by both claimants and DWP staff.

Despite the larger part played by mistakes in the system, and the lack of change compared to the year before, Minister for Welfare Reform Lord Freud chose to highlight fraud figures:

Government using more negative language about benefits

Mon, 08/04/2013 - 18:29 -- nick

The government is using more negative and loaded language about benefits and claimants, a study has found.

The Guardian has examined the text of ministerial speeches and press releases from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) over the last year, and found that the language used has become far more judgemental than in the final year of the previous Labour government.

The newspaper wrote:

Blog on benefit fraud v underpayment

Mon, 04/02/2013 - 14:01 -- nick

The Guardian writer James Ball has written a blog on benefit fraud.

A woman has been tried and sentenced to community service for claiming unemployment benefits while working.

So far, so predictable; just another story for The Mail to get its teeth in to, more evidence of the decline of Britain and the badness of claimants.

But there's a twist; if the woman in question had claimed the in-work benefits, including tax credits, she was entitled to she would actually have received almost twice as much.

DWP 'reducing benefit fraud' - and error

Thu, 29/11/2012 - 12:55 -- nick

The Department for Work and Pensions is today publicising its latest fraud figures.

It has published a press release online:

29 November 2012 – Benefit fraud bill is dropping – but more action is needed

Benefit fraud fell last year – but more action is needed to stop the £1.2bn cost to the taxpayer each year, Minister for Welfare Reform Lord Freud said today.



Subscribe to fraud