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Rabbie
A couple who claimed they were landlord and tenant were caught out as benefit cheats by pictures of them posing happily together with Disney characters.

Fraud investigators seized images of Marina Beddows, 54, and Colin Godbold, 57, alongside Mickey Mouse and Pluto following a raid on their home.

The pictures were used to undermine their claim that they were landlord and tenant and were in fact in a relationship, a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) spokesman said.

The couple, of Lister Road in Margate, Kent, pleaded guilty to benefit fraud totalling 70,551 between 2002 and 2007 after being found to be living together.

At Canterbury Crown Court last Thursday, Beddows was sentenced to 24 weeks in prison, suspended for 18 months, and a 12-week curfew order between 8pm and 7am.

Meanwhile, Godbold received a 20-week prison term, suspended for 18 months, and a 12-week curfew order between 8pm and 7am, the DWP said.

The overpayments included 17,551 in income support, 46,000 in housing benefit and 7,000 in council tax benefit, which fraud investigators said could have been spent on vital community services.

Steve Tamsett, senior fraud manager for Kent, said: "We are taking a tough line on benefit thieves because last year they stole around 0.9 billion, money that could be spent on other vital services such as schools and hospitals.

"Benefit thieves have to understand that they will not get away with it.

"Working together with local authorities and the police, we have a strong range of powers to investigate and, with the support of the public, we bring benefit thieves to justice."

glasgow lass
laugh.gif Whits the point in the curfew>>>>>>am sure that will really hurt.
Rabbie
Maybe they huv to stiy at hame and spend some time the gither as a "real" couple!

Now that's wit a call real punishment...

laugh.gif
Rab-oldname
QUOTE
'At Canterbury Crown Court last Thursday, Beddows was sentenced to 24 weeks in prison, suspended for 18 months, and a 12-week curfew order between 8pm and 7am.

Meanwhile, Godbold received a 20-week prison term, suspended for 18 months, and a 12-week curfew order between 8pm and 7am'

Thats the sort of Draconian punishment we all want to see - isn't it? unsure.gif
TeeHeeHee
Aye Rab, that'll deter the others for sure. wacko.gif
Tam blair
Aye, A big benefit tae the community for sure. huh.gif
Heather
It's very common for couple's in a relationship to deny it and claim Benefit as single people.
Even married couple's have claimed to be separated and one gives a different address usually a friend or relation. This address is known as a; ' giro drop'.

Some of the stunts Benefit cheats pull would surprise you. No I can't tell you how these stunts are pulled. biggrin.gif
I have to watch what I say as I am bound by, 'The Secrets Act' to the day I die. Every Civil Servant signs it when entering the Civil Service.

Rab, does that suspended sentence mean, if that couple behave for the next 18months they will not have to serve the Prison sentence???

TeeHeeHee
I hope it means if they misbehave in the next eighteen months they will be suspended. tongue.gif
Rabbie
Ah bet thier benefits will be suspended fur the next week or twa, haw haw.

Aye Heather, it basically means if they keep thurr snouts clean, the prison sentence will not come into effect. If they mess up, the sentence can be imposed. I am sure if I am wrang Rab will pit it right.

Dinnea worry aboot the OSA Heather, jist make sure if ye tell anywan, ye have them bumped aff... I know of a very discrete, secretive outfit, that "borrows" UK passports tae dae the joab.

Anywi, enough o' yon nonsence an back to reality, that's a lot of money those two have ripped off us awe. I am a wee bit surprised they didnea some "real" jail time, maybe the "system" has had a wee twang o' guilty conscience.

Mind ye bankers and politicains get away wi worse, maybe thats why the "soft option" here.
Heather
Well Rabbie if that's the case, the sentence they got really is a disgrace.

Surely that couple will have to repay the money. If not, then crime really does pay.

I'm fed up with all those people who are living the high life at tax payers expense. mad.gif



Alex MacPhee
QUOTE (Heather @ 18th Feb 2010, 09:56pm) *
I have to watch what I say as I am bound by, 'The Secrets Act' to the day I die. Every Civil Servant signs it when entering the Civil Service.

Aieee! You are right that you are bound by it, but nobody 'signs the Official Secrets Act'. You are bound even if you don't 'sign'. What you sign is a declaration confirming that your employer has drawn your obligations under the Act to your attention, but this has no legal effect ; you'd be bound by it in any case.

I like the ad that tells benefits cheats "We're watching you", but I'd like to see a similar one on TV for MPs ; you know, an MP sneaking furtively into his house, and the voiceover that says "We're watching your expenses claims..."
Alex MacPhee
QUOTE (Heather @ 18th Feb 2010, 11:09pm) *
Surely that couple will have to repay the money. If not, then crime really does pay.

There was a proggie on TV recently -- I think it was that Dominic what's-his-name, which looked at benefits cheats who were caught, as well as benefits claimants who really merited help, and showed the cheats being taken to court. In every case, the sentence included repaying all the money. Some stole so much you wonder how it can be repaid if they've spent it, without selling property. Hell mend them, as my mother would say.

bilbo.s
QUOTE (Alex MacPhee @ 19th Feb 2010, 09:18am) *
Hell mend them, as my mother would say.



Ma mammy used to say that as well- and my mammy´s mammy before her.

By the way, re. "Signing" Official Secrets Act - when I worked as a Christmas postie, I had to sign that I would not interfere with or steal any mail. I thought , in my angry- young-man way, that this was ridiculous, as it is illegal to steal anyhow. My father, who always had trouble seeing eye to eye with me, told me I was a rebel and would never amount to anything with this attitude.

I disagreed with his logic but perhaps his prognosis was too close for comfort.
TeeHeeHee
It was the same in the Armed Forces where we signed the Official Secrets Acts. We signed to state that we had understood that we were bound by said acts.
Jupiter
In the latest move in the war against benefit fraud the government has announced it is to join forces
with Crimestoppers in an effort to encourage exposure of benefits cheats who are currently costing the taxpayer 1.6 Bn a year.An initial campaign advertising this new initiative will be launched in Glasgow as well as other places.
Once again this government is indicating its determination to detect the thieves and fraudsters who abuse the benefit system.
rolleyes.gif
Melody
Maybe they should start looking within their own ranks first Jupiter.
Heather
Actually Alex, I did have to sign it and anyone who signs it can be arrested and sent to Prison if they give away any so called secrets.

One woman who was not long working in our Office had a part time job with a Company who chased up people who had stopped paying for items they bought and had removed to another address.
This woman was checking the Computers to see if they were in receipt of Social Security and when finding where they were living, she gave their address to that Company. She was caught out and sacked on the spot and we never heard if she was charged by the Police.
As the Computers had in built safety checks in them, she was caught out because the job she was doing she had no reason to access their details.

Some times these checks would come up on the screen and we had to fill out a Form stating why we were accessing that persons details. Other times we did not know until handed a Form then we had to check their papers to remind us what we were doing at that time.

We also had to give the names of any relations claiming at the Office we worked in and that persons papers we removed to our Section Managers Office. A safety check was put on the Computer so that the relations details could not be accessed without the EO's permission and another member of staff dealt with their claim.
Alex MacPhee
QUOTE (Heather @ 5th Dec 2011, 10:24am) *
Actually Alex, I did have to sign it and anyone who signs it can be arrested and sent to Prison if they give away any so called secrets.

This is one of these misconceptions that won't die ; but however many people attest that they have 'signed the Official Secrets Act', they have not. It actually makes no logical sense, implying, as it does, that if you don't 'sign the Official Secrets Act', you are not bound by it. (Good escape clause for spies, eh?)

This is not true in either case. You are invited to sign something when you join certain occupations, but you do not sign any 'Act', what you sign is a document in which you affirm that your obligations under the Official Secrets Act have been drawn to your attention and that you understand them.

Colloquially this is often referred to as 'signing the Official Secrets Act', but that is an error. You are bound by the Official Secrets Act whether you sign anything or not. You have as much defence on giving away some secret by saying 'I didn't sign the Official Secrets Act' as you would have to a charge of assault by saying 'I didn't sign the Offences Against the Person Act'.

I signed the same little form on joining Post Office Telecommunications (when it was still part of the Civil Service), and I still have my buff-coloured A5 copy in my personal files. It is exactly as I said it was, a declaration that I understood that the Act applied to me, not an agreement to be bound by the Act.

QUOTE
We also had to give the names of any relations claiming at the Office we worked in and that persons papers we removed to our Section Managers Office. A safety check was put on the Computer so that the relations details could not be accessed without the EO's permission and another member of staff dealt with their claim.

I had to confirm that I was not a member of the Communist Party or, oddly enough, the Scottish National Party (it being considered anti-establishment by its nature, I guess).
ashfield
I signed that as well, when I worked in the Royal Ordnance Factory. If I only had some secrets to share rolleyes.gif
Heather
The secrets were the business of the people claiming Social Security, Social Fund Loans, Crisis Loans etc.
Heather
A BASIC GUIDE TO OFFICIAL SECRETS ACT 1989.

1. Who is affected by the Act?

The Act applies to

Crown servants, including
Government ministers
Civil servants, including members of the diplomatic service
Members of the armed forces
The police

What is "official information"?

This means any information, document or article which a Crown servant or a government contractor has or has had in his or her possession by virtue of his or her position as such.

Is it an offence to disclose means of access to protected information.
What are the penalties for unauthorised disclosure?

Offences of unauthorised disclosure under the Act may be tried either on indictment, on High Court or Sheriff Court, or summarily, in a Sheriff Court by a magistrates' court. The maximum penalties are two years' imprisonment or an unlimited fine, or both, if the offence is tried on indictment, and six months' imprisonment or a 2000 fine, or both, if the offence is tried summarily.
Alex MacPhee
QUOTE (Heather @ 5th Dec 2011, 11:29am) *
A BASIC GUIDE TO OFFICIAL SECRETS ACT 1989.

1. Who is affected by the Act?

[ ... ]

This means any information, document or article which a Crown servant or a government contractor has or has had in his or her possession by virtue of his or her position as such.

The guidance above continues with

"Members of the public and others who are not Crown servants or government contractors but who have, or have had, official information in their possession."

In other words, you are bound by the Act even if you have not signed any declaration about it and have no official capacity.



TeeHeeHee
QUOTE (Alex MacPhee @ 5th Dec 2011, 10:04am) *
... I had to confirm that I was not a member of the Communist Party or, oddly enough, the Scottish National Party (it being considered anti-establishment by its nature, I guess).

Within a couple of days of being in the RAF, I was practically threatened with immediate release because I didn't affiliate to any of the churches for the first (compulsory) Church Parade.
"Put me down as Atheist or Agnostic Chief" rolleyes.gif
"THERE ARE NO ATHEISTS OR AGNOSTICS IN THE ROYAL AIR FORCE," he screamed into my face, "YOU TOOK AN OATH OF ALLEGIENCE TO GOD AND THE QUEEN, THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND, AIRMAN!"
"Put me down as Church of Scotland and the Wee Frees, Chief" biggrin.gif
1st lesson learned. rolleyes.gif
Alex MacPhee
QUOTE (TeeHeeHee @ 5th Dec 2011, 01:10pm) *
"YOU TOOK AN OATH OF ALLEGIENCE TO GOD AND THE QUEEN, THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND, AIRMAN![/i]"

It must give a great feeling of security to The Almighty that if He is ever in danger, the RAF will come flying in to His rescue!
Jupiter
Well,Melody,if you are aware of someone irrespective of who they may be get on the blower.
I had occasion to visit a private club on Saturday and couldnt help but overhear a conversation.It was more of a forum on how to get incapacity benefit with the help of the CAB.One chap was quite helpful giving all and sundry advice on how to pull it off.His particular ailment was a bad back.He couldnt get up and down stairs without help.Needed assistance in and out of the shower/bath.He told the CAB it took ten mins to get in and out the bath,they said say it takes 30 minutes,lay it on.This was the general tone of the conversation.So whats your point caller,you may ask?I was astounded to hear him say Right are we going in for a game of doubles--snooker that is,and off they went.Last I saw he was bent over the table lining up his shot,bad back and all.
rolleyes.gif
mlconnelly
I think, Jupiter, for the most part what you've just said is right but I also think that the days of laying it on are slowly changing. I was adviced to apply for DLA by my Jobscentre Advisor, who also advised that I should not fill the form in myself but to get help from Welfare Rights which I did andI'm very glad that I did as you'd need a Philadelphia lawyer to make heads or tails of the application form. Needless to say I was initially refused and had to appeal. The advice I got from my WR advisor was to be honest, which I was, and I won on appeal for both my medical assessment and DLA. I know I'm 1 of the lucky 1s but unlike a lot of people on sickness benefits/DLA, I hope to go back to work. with some support, sometime in the future. Mary smile.gif
ashfield
This is an excerpt from an article in yesterday's Observer

"Meanwhile, there has been a significant increase in articles about "cheats", "scroungers" and "skivers" in the media. Not just tabloids, but broadsheets and broadcasters. A recent Glasgow Media Group study revealed a near-tripling of these words in papers, alongside a reduction in reports on discrimination and sympathetic stories about disabled people. Focus groups found people suggesting seven in 10 claimants were fraudulent; in reality, levels of fraud for disability benefits are 0.5%, much lower than for other benefits – and less than the level of errors made by officials."
Full story

There are too many scare stories going round, I wonder from whence they emanate rolleyes.gif
Tommy Kennedy
There are too many scare stories going round, I wonder from whence they emanate - asks Ashfield.

From Jupiter tongue.gif
Jupiter
Hello Tommy,I hope this finds you well.As you will be aware it is important to keep the issues that matter to the forefront.Im sure many of out posters will be putting the Crimestopper phone number at the top of their lists.
rolleyes.gif
Tommy Kennedy
Maybe they should start looking within their own ranks first Jupiter. - says Melody

As Melody indicates, Jupiter, the real 'cheats' are those within the Establishment!
Jupiter
Tommy just you tell me who they are and Ill phone Crimestoppers.You will get me here anytime.
Im sure you will have enough names to keep them busy..
You do have names???
wee davy
No wonder it takes that poor fella, 30 minutes tae get oot the bath, Joop,.. wie awe the snooker he probably plays, its a wonder he's no UK FREAKIN CHAMPION lol

(PS I think the powers that be, might be MUCH more aware of back scams these days)
Jupiter
Weedavy,Ive commented often about benefit fraud but in reality Ive not had any first hand experience until I heard this chap spouting on about it.Not in a furtive way but quite candidly giving advice to those willing to listen.He said he was entitled to benefit due to his bad back and intimated that help was available to fill forms in.
I suppose he was giving it a bit of back spin.
ashfield
C'mon, gie the guy a break, he was probably needing a long rest from all that cueing, just to put something in his pockets rolleyes.gif
zascot
Chalk one up for you Ashfield.
TeeHeeHee
He'll be racking his brain playing it safe for his next financial cushion.
anonymous
Probably fed up with being screwed by the government and decided to screw back!
Rabbie
Yesterday , doon here where sheeps are nervous one sick (or as it transpired not so sick) scammer was awarded an early Xmas present, namely 10 weeks lie in time in her local nick.

This binta had been claiming maximum disability benefits for 7 years and screwed the system out of c 20K.

Justice will prevail, you may like this.

Her not untimely demise was due to a bust up with her ahem "partner." The disgrunted partner then provided the local cooncil with video footage depicting the ex partner heltering skeltering doon a huge water slideand humping some heavy shopping up a steep brae. Nice one, no bad for somewan on crutches.

I strongly feel this type of benefit scamming is particularly disgusting and I also feel than in this instance a 10 week all expences paid holiday is a serious let off, a year breaking rocks at El Capitano Jup's House of Correction and a confiscation order under the proceeds of crime would have been more appropraite.

It truely beggers belief that anyone could get away with this kind of scam for that amount of time. Now then where did I pit me zimmer... biggrin.gif
Jupiter
Rabbie,when Tommy Kennedy phones Crimestoppers with the names of all the benefit cheats he claims to know the House will fill up nicely.Im putting you in charge of the catering,Scottish Water and Warburton are your suppliers.
No pain, no gain.Swing that hammer!
rolleyes.gif
Heather
I wonder how many years it will take to pay back 20K!!!!!!!!!!

If I am right in thinking that ductions will be made at source from her Social Security which she will no doubt claim when she gets out of Prison. rolleyes.gif

Rabbie
Mouldy bried, manky water and swinging the lump hammer it is! Weel it was good enough fur many of us as weans, this regime did me little harm, look how I turned oot wacko.gif

Nea doobt, if she is skint and didnea have a mansion in her property portfolio, the theived 20k will recovered over the next 77 years at a stately rate of a fiver per week. Any hardship incurred due to deductions will likely be ameliorated by future benefit increases and more fraudulent claims.

Crime does pay!


benny
QUOTE (Jupiter @ 6th Dec 2011, 12:05pm) *
Rabbie,when Tommy Kennedy phones Crimestoppers with the names of all the benefit cheats he claims to know the House will fill up nicely.Im putting you in charge of the catering,Scottish Water and Warburton are your suppliers.
No pain, no gain.Swing that hammer!
rolleyes.gif



I take it you've already phone with the names of the lead swinger in the club and those of his enraptured audience, Joop?
Jupiter
Im working on it Benny.What tactics do you use when you phone in?
Heather
Jup, just ask for Fraud Section as you want to report a Benefit Fraudster. ohmy.gif

I remember one day a girl phoned to report another woman who was Claiming Benefit and working.
She gave details of where she worked, what time she left home and how much she earned.

I asked her how she knew so much and she replied, "she is my sister ". wub.gif
Jupiter
Heather,do these calls get recorded for quality and training purposes?
Ive got a direct line to number 10.Tommy K gave me it.
rolleyes.gif
Heather
Not that I know of Jup, but then I have been retired a few years now.

I'm sure D. Cameron would appreciate hearing from you. laugh.gif

As we used to say in the Social when we came back from our holiday, ' it's a whole new ball game'.

That was because the Regs changed so often we were always having to learn new one's.
rolleyes.gif
Jupiter
He does,Heather. I had a wee stint in the SS myself 1967.Gave it four months.
Alex MacPhee
QUOTE (Heather @ 6th Dec 2011, 04:05pm) *
I asked her how she knew so much and she replied, "she is my sister ".

Moral : Never borrow your sister's Gucci shoes without asking.
bilbo.s
QUOTE (Jupiter @ 6th Dec 2011, 05:57pm) *
He does,Heather. I had a wee stint in the SS myself 1967.Gave it four months.



Why am I not surprised? Did you ever get to meet Heinrich ? Oh no-too late ! tongue.gif
Heather
laugh.gif laugh.gif
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