A GRAYS woman was sentenced to 30 weeks in prison — suspended for two years — after admitting benefit fraud.
Jacqueline Seaton, of Lenthall Avenue, Grays, had pleaded guilty to benefit fraud offences against both Thurrock Council and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) when she appeared before Southend Crown Court.
On Monday (16 May) she returned to court for sentence..
The court heard that Income Support, Carer’s Allowance, Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit were all claimed by Seaton from September 2005 to April 2010 as she claimed she was unable to work due to caring full time for a relative.
However in May 2006 she began working for a local betting shop, later progressing to the position of deputy manager. She did not declare this and as a result of a joint investigation between the council and the DWP, it was discovered that £35,351.17 had been fraudulently obtained between May 2006 and April 2010.
Seaton was sentenced to 30 weeks imprisonment (suspended for 24 months), 200 hours unpaid community service and a 169 day curfew between the hours of 10pm and 6am. She will also have to repay all of the money she has fraudulently obtained.