A 51 year-old mother of two has been caught enjoying two action packed holidays during the five years she was claiming Disability Living Allowance (DLA). T Attansio had claimed she was “too weak to walk any significant distance” but was videoed on a water flume in a French water park. There were also footage of her climbing cobbled hills, bounding down steep steps and strolling on a beach.
The footage was passed to benefit fraud investigators and she admitted claiming £25,000 of DLA between August 2005 and February 2010. She arrived at Cardiff Crown Court on crutches and her right arm in a brace.
Judge Hopkins QC adjourned the case for reports and Attansio was bailed to return to court in September (2011) to be sentenced. Prosecutor N Gedge said; “There will be an application under the Proceeds of Crime Act to recover some of this money”.
A spokesman for the DWP stated “DLA is reserved for the most severely disabled members of society”.
This just makes me shake my head in wonder why people commit such acts. I mean there is only limited amount of resources for disabled people as it is without people faking it just to get a bit extra income, which means there is less money for genuine disabled claimants.
And with the Government spending billions on Olympic buildings and other non-important matters, there is even less money to support people.
Surely she knew she would get caught? It doesn’t take a genius to work out that people keep tabs on you and all it takes is for you to piss one person off and they will shop you. Simple as. So the best thing to do is not to commit the crime in the first place.
£25,000 is a lot of money that could have gone to someone who genuinely needed it. I don’t think the courts should sentence her to prison as it is a waste of resources keeping her. I think they should make her pay back every single penny by making her get a job and only allowing her to have £50 of her wages per week while the rest goes towards paying off her fraudulent claim.