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27 Sep 2019

Mothers who pretended to be single get suspended sentences

A mother of three who scrounged over £50,000 in state handouts by claiming she lived on her own insisted she carried on claiming because her live-in boyfriend would disappear for 'days at a time' with his friends. Marie Hayes, 36, had illegally pocketed welfare payments for more than three years by falsely telling officials she was a single parent - when in fact long term partner John Gavigan was living with her at their family home.

She was given six months in prison suspended for 12 months, and ordered to complete 220 hours of community service.

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And a benefit cheat who lied about being single so she could pocket nearly £30,000 from the state has narrowly avoided jail. Mum-of-three Diana Young, 59, lied about not being in a relationship for four years and eight months to claim employment support allowance. But she came unstuck after she and her partner made a claim for joint tax credits, where they described themselves as a couple on the form!

Young was sentenced to 22 weeks imprisonment suspended for 12 months. She will also be under curfew from midday to midnight which will run for four weeks.

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So they can carry on living their lives.

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