Almost £17,000 of fraudulent benefit claims will be recovered by Crawley Borough Council following the convictions of two Crawley women.
Denise Stammers, 33, of Holyrood Place, Broadfield, received a suspended prison sentence at Crawley Magistrates’ Court on March 12 after pleading guilty to fraudulently claiming £10,776.61 in housing and council tax benefits.
Stammers made a claim for the benefits in September 2011 stating she lived alone with her dependent child.
Through data-matching it became apparent she lived with her partner.
Their joint household income meant they would not be eligible for benefits.
When she was interviewed under caution by council officers, she admitted to being dishonest in her benefit application and that the claim was false from the beginning.
She was handed 10 weeks’ imprisonment suspended for 18 months and was ordered to complete 120 hours of community service in the next year.
She was also ordered to pay £85 in costs and a £20 victim surcharge.
Aji Ngum, 45, of Dickens Road, Tilgate, pleaded guilty to fraudulently claiming £6,206.76 in benefits after failing to declare changes in her employment circumstances.
Ngum was interviewed under caution by council officers after it was found she had not declared the full extent of her employment while claiming housing and council tax benefit.
After initially pleading not guilty a trial date was set for Ngum, but she changed her plea to guilty and was convicted at Crawley Magistrates’ Court on March 20.
She was given a 30 month conditional discharge and ordered to pay £340 in costs and fees.
Both have to repay the amounts they claimed fraudulently.