Couple who stole £100k in benefits but escaped jail may still have to pay it back

Andrew Hayes

Amanda Casserley

First published in News by , Chief Reporter

A PAIR of fraudsters who bagged more than £100,000 in benefits that they weren’t entitled to could still have to pay the cash back – and a Bournemouth councillor has slammed their sentence as a “slap in the face”.

As reported in the Daily Echo, Amanda Casserley, 34, and Andrew Hayes, 39, both of Spring Road, Bournemouth, were handed suspended jail terms at Bournemouth Crown Court last Friday.

The judge said that the pair should have been going to jail, but he spared them after concerns were raised over care for their four children.

Instead, their 12-month prison terms were suspended for two years and Casserley was ordered to do 180 hours of unpaid work, while Hayes was given an overnight curfew.

No confiscation order or order for court costs to be paid was made, but it has now emerged that the pair could still be pursued by the Government.

Bournemouth Borough Council helped the DWP bring Casserley and Hayes to justice.

Cllr Anne Filer, portfolio holder for corporate efficiency, said: “I am shocked and very angry to learn that this couple, who have cheated Bournemouth taxpayers out of more than £106,000 in such a deliberate and calculated way, have not been sentenced to jail nor have had to pay costs.

“The vast majority of Bournemouth residents are honest and hard-working and this derisible sentence is a real slap in the face for us all, giving out a message that cheats and liars can get away with such blatant behaviour.”

She added that the council had a “dedicated” team investigating fraud and it was “disappointing to say the least” that the couple were allowed to walk free.

A Department for Work and Pensions spokesman said: “On top of any sentence imposed by the court, anyone convicted of benefit fraud ends up with a criminal record and we will always seek to recover the stolen money and have introduced tougher new rules against fraudsters.”

The court heard that Casserley failed to notify the DWP that she was no longer a single parent after Hayes moved back in with her.

She continued to claim benefits that she was no longer entitled to for another decade, while Hayes earned money as well as receiving benefits.

In mitigation, the court was told the motivation for the offence was to provide for the family.

The council’s Fraud Referral Hotline on 01202 451536.

 

THE DWP spokesman said that investigators were making greater use of Proceeds of Crime Act powers, with up to 40 per cent of benefits or wages being able to be taken to speed up the return of fraudulently-claimed cash.
The DWP’s financial investigation unit can also obtain orders to make convicted benefits cheats sell their possessions to repay stolen money.
Those convicted also face a loss of benefits of 13 weeks for a first offence.

Comments (25)

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6:26am Thu 31 Jul 14

manyogie says...

Disgraceful,
Disgraceful, manyogie
  • Score: 12

6:26am Thu 31 Jul 14

manyogie says...

Disgraceful,
Disgraceful, manyogie
  • Score: 12

7:43am Thu 31 Jul 14

wool525 says...

and so they should pay it back
and so they should pay it back wool525
  • Score: 31

7:44am Thu 31 Jul 14

bosco1 says...

Every single penny should be repaid together with interest, they stole money. I had a mortgage years ago, not stolen but loaned to me I had to pay back every penny I borrowed plus very high interest back.!! They both should do the same and should not be granted any benefits in the future.
Every single penny should be repaid together with interest, they stole money. I had a mortgage years ago, not stolen but loaned to me I had to pay back every penny I borrowed plus very high interest back.!! They both should do the same and should not be granted any benefits in the future. bosco1
  • Score: 53

7:44am Thu 31 Jul 14

willytee says...

I don't know where the bit 'could' or 'may have to' come from. They must be made to pay it back. If they are allowed to get away with it then what message is it relaying to others who might consider similar actions?
I don't know where the bit 'could' or 'may have to' come from. They must be made to pay it back. If they are allowed to get away with it then what message is it relaying to others who might consider similar actions? willytee
  • Score: 38

8:12am Thu 31 Jul 14

MMM444 says...

Is the house they live in there's ????, You don't say Echo, if it is lets have it confiscated , Sell it if there's any equity in it, Let's have the taxpayer's money back, no doubt because they have children there still claiming benefits, the country's a joke, and crime does pay these days
Is the house they live in there's ????, You don't say Echo, if it is lets have it confiscated , Sell it if there's any equity in it, Let's have the taxpayer's money back, no doubt because they have children there still claiming benefits, the country's a joke, and crime does pay these days MMM444
  • Score: 17

9:18am Thu 31 Jul 14

we-shall-see says...

That's a laugh saying they may not get benefits for 13 weeks - she at least will still get benefits for her children, so they won't be entirely without money. They'll just have to spread what they do get a little further to feed themselves.

I think their sentence should be appealed and both sent straight to jail for at least two years each. When we read of other people who have fraudulently claimed much less than this couple, yet get sent to jail even when they have children, it is unfair NOT to have sent this pair to jail!

They knew the risks when they started their fraudulent claims, and probably gave no thought to their kids at that time, so it seems to me they have simply used their kids as an "excuse" not to go to jail :o/
That's a laugh saying they may not get benefits for 13 weeks - she at least will still get benefits for her children, so they won't be entirely without money. They'll just have to spread what they do get a little further to feed themselves. I think their sentence should be appealed and both sent straight to jail for at least two years each. When we read of other people who have fraudulently claimed much less than this couple, yet get sent to jail even when they have children, it is unfair NOT to have sent this pair to jail! They knew the risks when they started their fraudulent claims, and probably gave no thought to their kids at that time, so it seems to me they have simply used their kids as an "excuse" not to go to jail :o/ we-shall-see
  • Score: 16

9:26am Thu 31 Jul 14

Hessenford says...

So I assume that more tax payers money now has to be spent on a new investigation in order to recover the money from these two scroungers, why couldn't the court order them to repay what they scrounged and save us all extra money..
So I assume that more tax payers money now has to be spent on a new investigation in order to recover the money from these two scroungers, why couldn't the court order them to repay what they scrounged and save us all extra money.. Hessenford
  • Score: 20

10:17am Thu 31 Jul 14

speedy231278 says...

May? Surely if they didn't get sent down, it should be must? Otherwise they've defrauded the state of a six figure sum, been found guilty, not had to pay costs and cost a small fortune again for all the paperwork. If they don't have to pay it back, how are they being punished?
May? Surely if they didn't get sent down, it should be must? Otherwise they've defrauded the state of a six figure sum, been found guilty, not had to pay costs and cost a small fortune again for all the paperwork. If they don't have to pay it back, how are they being punished? speedy231278
  • Score: 21

10:24am Thu 31 Jul 14

Blackandred says...

It may be a "slap in the face" for the rest of us, but looking at the photos of the offenders, it appears that one of them has already been slapped already. I understand that police have apprehended a suspect, a Mr Ugly Tree, who is helping them with their enquires.
It may be a "slap in the face" for the rest of us, but looking at the photos of the offenders, it appears that one of them has already been slapped already. I understand that police have apprehended a suspect, a Mr Ugly Tree, who is helping them with their enquires. Blackandred
  • Score: 1

11:41am Thu 31 Jul 14

bubbles20 says...

MAY have to pay it back. ? What a joke, i doubt they will have to pay a penny back, they should of gone to jail, disgusting
MAY have to pay it back. ? What a joke, i doubt they will have to pay a penny back, they should of gone to jail, disgusting bubbles20
  • Score: 15

2:49pm Thu 31 Jul 14

Gingertree says...

MAY!!?? Have to pay it back this country is a poxy joke
MAY!!?? Have to pay it back this country is a poxy joke Gingertree
  • Score: 7

3:22pm Thu 31 Jul 14

Bob Bournemouth says...

I bet they knew they would be treated leniently "for the childrens' sake". They are as bad as the illegal immigrants who are allowed to stay because of their families. It should be the other way round - they keep their children if they behave properly.
I bet they knew they would be treated leniently "for the childrens' sake". They are as bad as the illegal immigrants who are allowed to stay because of their families. It should be the other way round - they keep their children if they behave properly. Bob Bournemouth
  • Score: 5

5:27pm Thu 31 Jul 14

O'Reilly says...

Bob Bournemouth wrote:
I bet they knew they would be treated leniently "for the childrens' sake". They are as bad as the illegal immigrants who are allowed to stay because of their families. It should be the other way round - they keep their children if they behave properly.
Tut,tut,....'illegal immigrants' ? ....surely you mean undocumented tourist Bob?
[quote][p][bold]Bob Bournemouth[/bold] wrote: I bet they knew they would be treated leniently "for the childrens' sake". They are as bad as the illegal immigrants who are allowed to stay because of their families. It should be the other way round - they keep their children if they behave properly.[/p][/quote]Tut,tut,....'illegal immigrants' ? ....surely you mean undocumented tourist Bob? O'Reilly
  • Score: 3

5:35pm Thu 31 Jul 14

Considerablysmarterthanyou says...

To some of the other "posters", is it OK for MP's and Banksters to steal far greater sums and go completely unpunished?

I don't condone their actions but I would like to see commensurate effort expended on the real criminals.
To some of the other "posters", is it OK for MP's and Banksters to steal far greater sums and go completely unpunished? I don't condone their actions but I would like to see commensurate effort expended on the real criminals. Considerablysmarterthanyou
  • Score: -1

5:37pm Thu 31 Jul 14

kalebmoledirt says...

Be interesting to know how they will pay back a penny .who is going to employ them ,they have made themselves unemployable ,sponsored by the state .he's an alcoholic. With a phseudo illness,she is an overweight unattractive woman that no employers are willing to hire because of the maternity leave that is sure to come ,rethink the children's welfare . Seek some East Europeans that want to work and exchange them for these Chavs before they out number decent people
Be interesting to know how they will pay back a penny .who is going to employ them ,they have made themselves unemployable ,sponsored by the state .he's an alcoholic. With a phseudo illness,she is an overweight unattractive woman that no employers are willing to hire because of the maternity leave that is sure to come ,rethink the children's welfare . Seek some East Europeans that want to work and exchange them for these Chavs before they out number decent people kalebmoledirt
  • Score: 5

6:24pm Thu 31 Jul 14

chrisii1991 says...

Why should they get away with it because they have kids? they should be locked up and kids given to relatives
Why should they get away with it because they have kids? they should be locked up and kids given to relatives chrisii1991
  • Score: 6

6:26pm Thu 31 Jul 14

rebel1943 says...

XBman ,
What is to bet they are drawing benefits again , now they are back together . Sentence that drunk to cleaning prisons for 10 years . That should cure him . Only need the mother looking after the children .
XBman , What is to bet they are drawing benefits again , now they are back together . Sentence that drunk to cleaning prisons for 10 years . That should cure him . Only need the mother looking after the children . rebel1943
  • Score: 2

7:15pm Thu 31 Jul 14

dustbindanny says...

Correct me if I,m wrong ,but if they are on
Benefits , then surely the Tax Payer is paying it back not them? If you forget your Tax return, £100 fine, Benefit dodgers who Fiddle the system appear to be immune from real punishment, welcome to Britain 2014 ! All us Tax Payers are MUG,S? And we can't do anything about it!?
Correct me if I,m wrong ,but if they are on Benefits , then surely the Tax Payer is paying it back not them? If you forget your Tax return, £100 fine, Benefit dodgers who Fiddle the system appear to be immune from real punishment, welcome to Britain 2014 ! All us Tax Payers are MUG,S? And we can't do anything about it!? dustbindanny
  • Score: 5

7:53pm Thu 31 Jul 14

martinsim34 says...

these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud
not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue
these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue martinsim34
  • Score: 1

8:38pm Thu 31 Jul 14

CHERYLE1 says...

My mother who is 80 due to a mix up between the pension/council rent/council tax dept (all her official paperwork had gone in stating everything she had coming in and going out but somewhere my dads small pension hadn't been added in). Unaware and not receiving any paperwork whatsoever for a long time from any office she didn't even realise that when her pension went up by pennies she had to let the council know every time. She assumed that the relevant departments all worked together and they all knew what the other was paying out. Consequently she ended up owing £3,000 from the week that my dads pension was paid to her after he died 7 years ago and she has to now pay this back over the next 3 years straight from her pension from source leaving her without the ability to now go on a caravan holiday for a week once a year. Disgusted that elderly people who through not understanding the complex benefits system have to pay back but devious, 'oh whoa is me' thieves like these two dont!!! Every week they drew that money they knew they were not entitled to it but the system lets them easily get away with it and for sure they will be doing the same thing again when the dust settles as there are no consequences........
My mother who is 80 due to a mix up between the pension/council rent/council tax dept (all her official paperwork had gone in stating everything she had coming in and going out but somewhere my dads small pension hadn't been added in). Unaware and not receiving any paperwork whatsoever for a long time from any office she didn't even realise that when her pension went up by pennies she had to let the council know every time. She assumed that the relevant departments all worked together and they all knew what the other was paying out. Consequently she ended up owing £3,000 from the week that my dads pension was paid to her after he died 7 years ago and she has to now pay this back over the next 3 years straight from her pension from source leaving her without the ability to now go on a caravan holiday for a week once a year. Disgusted that elderly people who through not understanding the complex benefits system have to pay back but devious, 'oh whoa is me' thieves like these two dont!!! Every week they drew that money they knew they were not entitled to it but the system lets them easily get away with it and for sure they will be doing the same thing again when the dust settles as there are no consequences........ CHERYLE1
  • Score: 7

9:03pm Thu 31 Jul 14

Phixer says...

martinsim34 wrote:
these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud
not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue
Would someone mind translating this into English for the benefit of us Anglo Saxons?
[quote][p][bold]martinsim34[/bold] wrote: these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue[/p][/quote]Would someone mind translating this into English for the benefit of us Anglo Saxons? Phixer
  • Score: 4

11:01pm Thu 31 Jul 14

Hessenford says...

martinsim34 wrote:
these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud
not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue
I'm just curious but what school did you go to.
[quote][p][bold]martinsim34[/bold] wrote: these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue[/p][/quote]I'm just curious but what school did you go to. Hessenford
  • Score: 3

1:31am Fri 1 Aug 14

justsayithowitis says...

Phixer wrote:
martinsim34 wrote:
these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud
not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue
Would someone mind translating this into English for the benefit of us Anglo Saxons?
I am glad that I am not the only one who couldn't understand this
[quote][p][bold]Phixer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]martinsim34[/bold] wrote: these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue[/p][/quote]Would someone mind translating this into English for the benefit of us Anglo Saxons?[/p][/quote]I am glad that I am not the only one who couldn't understand this justsayithowitis
  • Score: 3

11:52pm Fri 1 Aug 14

RM says...

justsayithowitis wrote:
Phixer wrote:
martinsim34 wrote:
these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud
not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue
Would someone mind translating this into English for the benefit of us Anglo Saxons?
I am glad that I am not the only one who couldn't understand this
If you read it slowly it makes sense & makes a very valid point too.
[quote][p][bold]justsayithowitis[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Phixer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]martinsim34[/bold] wrote: these are the ones u here about not those who loose thier social housing rites all benifits r stopped but no crim record so dwp r lying. ask under freedom of infomation how much they loose in benifit fraud not necessaraly those imagrants but our own people who steal benifits dont u think it puts a new lite on the issue[/p][/quote]Would someone mind translating this into English for the benefit of us Anglo Saxons?[/p][/quote]I am glad that I am not the only one who couldn't understand this[/p][/quote]If you read it slowly it makes sense & makes a very valid point too. RM
  • Score: -1

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