25 Feb 2015

Royal Marine bodyguard in £49k benefits swindle

A former Royal Marine swindled £49,000 in benefits by claiming he was too injured to walk while working as a bodyguard in the Middle East. (h/t Dave)

Paul White told doctors he was crippled by pain while playing golf and going to the gym, Exeter Crown Court heard.

White, 46, got a higher rate of pension because of his supposed disability.

He was jailed for two years, suspended for two years, ordered to do 300 hours unpaid community work and repay the £49,000 with £2,500 costs.

When investigators called at White's home in Bunkersland, near Tiverton, he was away working as a guard on ships in the Arabian Gulf.

Judge Phillip Wassall said: "You were working in seaborne security and as a bodyguard at the time you were claiming disability benefits but you were also playing golf and doing 10 kilometre runs in less than an hour. At the time you were maintaining the claim that you were only capable of walking 25 metres and that with the aid of a stick. The dishonesty went on for six years and was breathtaking."

He ordered White to repay the money at £1,500 a month, which means he should clear the debt in less than three years.

David Sapiecha, for the prosecution, said White was invalided out of the Royal Marines in 2001 with a back injury.

He said the fraud was committed against the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency, which assessed White as qualifying for the higher rate of allowance in 2003.

The court heard an orthopaedic expert concluded either White had initially lied about the injury or it had improved significantly between 2001 and 2006.

Lee Bremridge, for the defence, said White had suffered a prolapsed disc which was a genuine injury to his back and his initial claims were genuine.



Mark Wadsworth said...

Keep up the good work compiling these examples of benefit fraud, I do read this blog every now and then.

John Page said...

Thanks, Mark. Appreciated.

Anonymous said...

He didnt get injured in the line of fire then? He got a bad back aged 32?

Once again, there is a Doctor somewhere who gave him a sick note.