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Lambeth man jailed for benefit lie

A Lambeth resident who lied about his earnings to claim nearly £18,000 in benefit he wasn’t entitled to has been jailed.

Joachim Kawesa pleaded guilty to housing benefit and council tax benefit fraud totalling £17,888.39 at Tower Bridge Magistrates Court on October 16 2009. He was sentenced on 12 December at the Inner London Crown Court to eight weeks imprisonment.

Kawesa was overpaid after producing fraudulent payslips from an employer he did not work for. He falsely declared very low earnings which gave him entitlement to both housing benefit and council tax benefit.

Councillor Jim Dickson, lead member for finance and resources at Lambeth Council, said: “People who claim benefits they are not entitled to deprive people in real need of support from us. This sentence illustrates that the courts regard benefit fraud as seriously as we do and I hope it acts as a deterrent to others who are claiming benefit that they shouldn’t. Our benefit investigation team works round the clock to catch fraudsters. It is not a case of if we catch you, its when.”

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