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6 May 2014

Teensiest of benefit fraud sentences

An Accrington businessman who lived in an imposing Grade Two listed 'Hall' claimed £39 a week housing benefit despite owning three other properties, one of them valued at £400,000.

Blackburn magistrates heard Mohammed Saleem, 56, did not reveal he had an interest in the other houses and was paid £1,887 in council tax benefit he was not entitled to.

And the chairman of the magistrates told Saleem his 'theft' was from the public purse. “Ultimately public services are affected by this kind of offence,” he added.

Saleem, of High Brake Hall, Huncoat, pleaded guilty to falsely producing a document to obtain benefits.

He was fined £180 and ordered to pay £270 costs.

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He was fined less than 10% of what he stole! This is not deterrence!

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