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Howard and Byrne Solicitors, York - Criminal Defence Specialists

Benefit Cheat Admits Conning £7,100 from Selby and East Riding Councils

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3:06pm 27th September 2013

A former resident of Selby has pleaded guilty to fraudulently claiming £7,100 in benefits from Selby District Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council.

Paul Ward, 31, who previously lived at Buller Street, Selby and The Old Gospel Hall, Rawcliffe, and now living at Scholars Gate, Cudworth, Barnsley, faced two charges of falsely claiming Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit when he appeared at York Magistrates Court on Thursday 26 September.

Mr Ward made false statements to the East Riding of Yorkshire Council in 2009 and to Selby District Council in August 2011 with a view to obtaining benefits which is contrary to the Social Security Administration Act 1992.

After a joint investigation by Selby District Council and the East Riding of Yorkshire Council, it found that he had failed to declare self-employed income of more than £32,500 in this period. Mr Ward moved between addresses during this time, which resulted in the joint prosecution by the two authorities. 

Mr Ward received a Housing Benefit overpayment of £574 and a Council Tax Benefit overpayment of £176 from October 2009 to April 2010 from East Riding of Yorkshire Council. From August 2011 to October 2012 Mr Ward received £5,177 in Housing Benefit and £1,213 in Council Tax Benefit from Selby District Council.

 These overpayments are being recovered by Selby District Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council directly from Mr Ward. Sentencing has been deferred until 20 March 2014.

Anyone who suspects benefit fraud can report it to the Council either online via www.selby.gov.uk or by calling the Benefit Fraud hotline: 01757 292230 (you do not have to give your name, you can just leave a message).

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