Woman avoids jail after £9K benefits fraud conviction

A 46-year-old woman has been given a suspended 12 week custodial sentence after pleading guilty to benefit fraud after dishonestly claiming over £9000.

Penny Smith was charged with dishonestly obtaining Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit and Income Support between July 2011 and February 2013.

Mrs Smith, from St Ebbes, claimed a total of £9075.33 and was sentenced at Oxford Magistrates’ Court to 12 weeks custody suspended for 12 months. She also has to obey a three month curfew between the hours of 6pm and 6am as well as paying £350 costs.

She will have to pay back the overpaid benefit to both Oxford City Council and the Department for Work and Pensions.