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Saturday, 25 October 2014

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Terminally ill Ulverston man made false benefit claims

A TERMINALLY ill Ulverston man has admitted falsely claiming more than £8,000 in benefits.

Philip Henderson, 44, pleaded guilty to falsely claiming £8,245.80 in benefits from September 12, 2012 to November 11 last year.

The court was told Henderson, of Devonshire Road, Ulverston, told the Department for Work and Pensions he was unable to walk unassisted and needed personal care in the night but an investigation found he was in a better condition than he had admitted.

Mrs Lisa Hine, prosecuting, said: “The fraud investigator showed that they observed him walking at a moderate pace out on his own, he was observed shopping, walking the dog and gardening.

“This claim was not fraudulent from the outset but it became fraudulent.”

However, the court was told Henderson’s condition meant that at times he was not eligible for the extra benefits while at other times as his condition worsened, he was.

Mrs Maureen Fawcett, defending, said: “He does have a terminal illness but I have instruction not to discuss this in open court.

“The initial claim in itself was legitimate at the time when he needed somebody to stay with him.

“He accepts his mobility has improved and he can at times walk unsupervised.

“He has been paying back £40 a month which started around April.”

Mr George Butler, presiding magistrate, handed Henderson a four-month curfew running from 7pm to 7am.

The court was told he is repaying £40 per month to the DWP.

Henderson did not wish to comment when approached by the Evening Mail.

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