Biggest benefit fraud in history?

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  • #287203
    peterdelamothe
    Keymaster

    A lot of this fraud was UC Housing costs. Taking investigators away from local authorities was always going to be a disaster I thought.

    A gang who “systematically plundered” the UK’s welfare system in the largest benefits fraud ever uncovered have been jailed for a total of 25 years and five months.

    Judge Aaronberg said that it was fraud on an “industrial scale” which had resulted in the loss of many millions of pounds to the taxpayer.

    “It falls to me to sentence you today for your involvement, along with others not before the court, in the largest fraud of its type ever to be prosecuted in this country.” Judge Aaronberg said that the sentencing guidelines envisaged a maximum fraud of £2 million.

    Judge Aaronberg said the gang had been able to operate for so long because of “woefully inadequate checking systems” at the Department for Work and Pensions which failed to identify “repeated use of the same names, addresses and telephone numbers”

    #287206
    John Boxall
    Participant

    Its rather like what happened with Carers Allowance claims

    It suggests that the DWP isnt carrying out the most basic security checks

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by John Boxall.
    #287209
    peterdelamothe
    Keymaster

    Not sure John. If 20 “John Boxall”s came in to your Council tomorrow and all said they were 80 years old and lived together would they all get paid HB?

    #287210
    John Boxall
    Participant

    No………

    I havnt read the report but it seems like they were submitting things like fake earnings details as well which makes you wonder how secure the whole ‘system’ is

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield

    #287211
    John Boxall
    Participant

    There are certainly lots of children on two claims in UC though

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield

    #287218
    markg
    Participant

    herein lies one of the problems of centralising and removing the much under-estimate element of ‘local knowledge’.
    Fake wage slips and fake tenancy agreements submitted, I believe. So, we (LAs) have the VEP system for earnings checks. Obvs DWP didn’t………..

    #287228
    peterdelamothe
    Keymaster

    markg….yes the issue of local knowledge was argued at the time. Info held on Council Tax too. Were the LA’s right? Yes.

    Years ago a load of claims were being paid at an address in Highgate North London. What was the problem the then DHSS wanted to know. We explained that was the address of Highgate cemetery. We were told we still had to pay HB and rather than get angry had a bit of fun. Well at least they will be all in for vists…..its a grave matter….listen out for any bells ringing etc. Still makes me laugh remembering.

    #287231
    John Boxall
    Participant

    I cant imagine that if it wanted the DWP could create a list of all UK Residential Addresses from the Council Tax Databases.

    I imagine that there would be a fair few other users who might pay for this as well eg Motor insurance Companies but I suspect that it will never happen

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield

    #287232
    Alistair Costelloe
    Participant

    The problem would be that the time it takes the VOA to band and register addresses would mean that the database would always be several months out of date.

    #287233
    John Boxall
    Participant

    Clearly there will always be an issue with new developments but as we build 250000 homes a year and have a stock of just under 30 million I doubt if it will be a huge issue.

    My suggestion is that it would simply be a list of residential addresses so we don’t get as Peter experienced a load of claims from a Cemetery

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield

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