Live updates

Sister demands answers after her brother starved to death due to his benefits being cut

Mark Wood starved to death last year after his benefits were cut Credit: Cathie Wood

He was vulnerable and starved to death just months after his benefits were cut - bewildered and overwhelmed by officialdom. Mark Wood, who lived in Bampton, Oxfordshire, suffered from mental health problems, but he was deemed fit and able to work. Consequently his payments were stopped. Now his sister is demanding answers, and a reform of the system so that no one else suffers the same fate as him. Asana Greenstreet has more. In response to our report, the Department for Work and Pensions said this:

The coroner attributed Mr Wood's eating disorder and food phobia as the likely cause of death, rather than issues around benefits. After receiving new evidence from Mr Wood's GP we revised the original decision with an internal review being carried out.

– The Department for Work and Pensions

Reading woman pleads guilty to benefit fraud

A woman from Reading has been given a suspended sentenced after being convicted of benefit fraud.

Marion Forrest, from Cambian Way in Calcot, was sentenced to eight weeks in custody suspended for 12 months after she falsely claimed more than £12,000 in housing benefits.

The 37-year-old was given a Supervision Order for six months and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £80 and £250 costs.

Reading Borough Council will always take a strong stand on issues of Fraud against the council. Thank you to the investigation team for their work in this area. If anyone suspects someone is committing fraud, either Benefit, Tenancy or Blue Badge parking fraud, they should contact 0500 50077 – a free phone fraud reporting line."

– Jo Lovelock, Reading Council Leader


  1. National

Osborne: 'This month we will make work pay'

Chancellor George Osborne has defended welfare and tax changes that are being introduced this month.

In a speech, he said: "For too long we've had a system where people who did the right thing, who get up in the morning and work hard felt penalised for it. While people who did the wrong thing got rewarded for it. That's wrong.

Chancellor George Osborne said: "This month we're going to put things right".

"So, this month we're going to put things right. This month, nine out of ten working households will be better off as a result of the changes we are making. This month we will make work pay".

Scuba diving woman and husband jailed for benefits fraud

A woman who banked more than £130,000 in benefits after claiming severe disability has been jailed today with her ex-husband.

Roswitha Jones from Ramsgate, and her ex Reginald from Dover, were jailed for fraud after a court heard how she was so ill she couldn't open a bottle of wine yet she was pictured scuba-diving in the Indian Ocean. Click below for the full report


BBC presenter admits benefit fraud

BBC Watchdog presenter Dan Penteado has admitted £24,000 benefits fraud.

Kerry O'Neill, prosecuting, said the offences went back to 2007 when Penteado filled out his first claim form and failed to declare he had another bank account.

The court heard that Penteado repeated the fraud up to 2011.

In that time he failed to tell Bournemouth Borough Council he had been paid more than £56,000 for his work on Rogue Traders from 2008 to 2011.

Miss O'Neill said. "He failed to notify the borough council of the money coming in."

No mitigation was put put forward by his solicitor, Terrence Scanlan, at the hearing.

The Portuguese-born presenter, who was wearing a white shirt, black tie, black trousers and a black jumper and carrying a black biker jacket, left court without comment.

He started working with Mr Allwright in 2001.

Jail warning for benefit fraud TV presenter

BBC Rogue Traders presenter Dan Penteado pleaded guilty today to council tax and housing benefit fraud to the tune of more than £24,000.

Penteado, 40, admitted eight offences of dishonestly or knowingly claiming the benefits while not declaring he earned thousands from the BBC for the show.

Penteado, from Bournemouth who co-hosts the programme with Matt Allwright, was warned he could face jail and he was granted bail while a pre-sentence report is prepared.

The case was adjourned until July 17 at Bournemouth Magistrates' Court.

Load more updates