Greenfield woman's benefit scam amounted to £9,500


Staff reporter (Leader Live)

A WOMAN has admitted a £9,500 benefits scam.

Margaret Mallinson, 60, claimed benefits as a single woman but she failed to declare she and her partner were living as husband and wife.

Flintshire Magistrates Court at Mold heard the total overpayment was originally £9,500.

Mallinson, of Abbey Court in Greenfield, who suffers from ill-health, was placed on a three month curfew under which she must remain indoors between 8pm and 7am.

She must also pay £240 costs.

Bryony Tomlinson, prosecuting, said Mallinson received income support from the DWP and housing and council tax benefit from Flintshire Council.

Initially she claimed with her partner Richard Flynn but then in March 2011 she told the council he had moved out and she was paid as a single woman.

In January of this year information was received that she was not at the Abbey Court address but was living with her partner at The Abbey Farm Caravan Park in Llangollen.

A wealth of evidence was uncovered which linked her to Mr Flynn and to the caravan park.

Mr Flynn had obtained employment there, and they had a joint bank account which they transferred to the Llangollen branch.

The bank had issued the defendant with four debit cards and Mr Flynn had received three cards relating to the account.

Regular payments went into the account from his British Steel pension.

Mallinson had credit accounts from the Llangollen address and she gave the caravan park address when she applied for a new passport in September, 2012.

Interviewed, she denied living with her partner at Llangollen but said she remained friends with him.

He would occasionally help her out financially.

But Ms Tomlonson said she had failed to inform the authorities that he was helping her financially and failed to notify income in respect of pension and his employment.
Brian Cross, defending, said it was a sad case.

Mallonson had been looking after her dying mother and suffered from multiple sclerosis. Reporting changes in her circumstances had been the last thing on her mind.

She needed respite and was staying with her former partner.

His client had no money and her former partner would sometimes help her out and it got out of hand.

She also suffered short term memory loss and she was awaiting neurological review of her MS.

Mr Cross said the offences were not deliberate but were down to her medical condition.

She was very remorseful and he asked the court to deal with her as leniently as possible.

See full story in the Leader

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