Man played football while claiming disability benefits

By Harriet Ernstsons Friday 16 May 2014 Updated: 19/05 10:22

PLAYING football while claiming benefits for walking difficulties has seen a Batchley man convicted of benefit fraud.

Martin Smith was given a three-year conditional discharge at Redditch Magistrates' Court on May 6 after pleading guilty to falsely claiming.

The 43-year-old from Radford House received £19,736.49 between December 2009 and November 2013 in Income Support, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit and Disability Living Allowance.

Magistrates heard he did not declare his medical condition had improved, with fraud investigators finding he was playing five-a-side football despite claiming to have difficulty walking.

Smith also continued to claim benefits he was not entitled to by failing to inform the Department for Work and Pensions and Redditch Borough Council he had received a large amount of money through a compensation award.

All the money will be recovered by the DWP and council through their own methods.

To report benefit fraud suspicions, e-mail benefitsfraud@redditchbc.gov.uk or call 01527 534011.

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