Couple who won the lottery found guilty of benefit fraud

A couple who won the lottery have been found guilty of claiming over £42,000 in benefits.

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by Jack White |
Published on

After winning £250,000 on the lottery, Alfred Wells, 64 and Patricia Marshall, 55, claimed they only had £800 in savings to receive the false benefits.

Despite having the huge win, Alfred and Patricia, from South Tyneside, claimed housing benefit, pension credit and council tax benefit.

As well as the £250,00, Alfred also had a £38,000 retirement windfall.

Despite winning the lottery, the couple still claimed benefits
Despite winning the lottery, the couple still claimed benefits

Prosecutor Lee Fish said: “They declared they only had £700 to £800 worth of savings. They had £171,000 at their disposal.

“Both defendants were interviewed on August 1 last year and in interview, accepted that they had made these applications for benefits out of sheer greed.”

Upon his arrest, Alfred said: “All I’m saying is hands up, I have been caught. I have been an idiot, a fraudster, whatever you are going to call it.”

Both Alfred and Patricia pleaded guilty to benefit fraud at Newcastle Crown Court and received a two year suspended sentence and were given 100 hours of unpaid work each.

Defending the couple, Jonathan Cousins said: “When [Alfred] won the money he gave a significant proportion of it to charity, a significant proportion of it to his family and invested a large amount of it.

“He lived off the remainder. They both lived together and had no other money. What they both did was claim benefits and they both deeply regret that.”

Alfred and Patricia have since paid back the fraudulently claimed benefits.

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