February 22, 2011 10:25 ET

Woman who Claimed Over GBP 100,000 Reunited With Child After Being Jailed in Benefit Fraud Case

LIVERPOOL, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Feb. 22, 2011) - A woman who was jailed for receiving over £100,000 of benefits has been reunited with her baby who she was separated from, despite the woman breast feeding her 3 week old baby at the time.

The defendant pleaded guilty, however it was agreed she would have been entitled to the benefits had she claimed them properly, yet but the Learned Judge ruled immediate imprisonment was necessary.

The woman was jailed for nine months at Snaresbrook Crown Court. However, her defence negotiated with the crown and they agreed that the net loss to the public purse was in fact negligible.

However, the woman has now been reunited with her child after her barrister, Steven Pidcock of leading benefit fraud solicitors, David Phillips and Partners, went to the Court of Appeal within days of her sentencing and 3 Judges deemed their enforced separation 'unnacceptable'.

Judgment stated that Judges at first instance must have regard to the availability of a place on a mother and baby prison unit. This must occur before imposing custodial sentences in these circumstances and Steven argued that the way she and her baby were treated was 'not humanitarian and arguably uncivilised'.

David Phillips and Partners Solicitors stated that the Department of Work and Pensions are often not discriminating in their actions, with Senior Partner, David Norman stating: 'The DWP will enforce prosecution against those who inadvertently fail to disclose changes in circumstances which result in overpayments as they do against those involved in conspiracies to defraud the system. They frequently obtain admissions from people who are vulnerable and frightened and may end up 'admitting' to something they have not done'.

Benefit fraud is a serious offence and carries serious punishment, including imprisonment, so it is always worth seeking legal advice and representation. David Phillips and Partners are one of the leading practitioners in this field. Visit their website www.dpp-law.com for more information.

About David Phillips & Partners Solicitors:

  • Offices throughout the UK including London, Liverpool, Manchester and Birmingham.
  • Regulated by Solicitors' Regulation Authority (SRA Ref#: 73353).
  • Founded in 1982 and has over 25 years legal experience in the following specialised areas; criminal defence, accident claims, actions against the police, property conveyancing, wills and probate, matters involving children, motoring offences and prison law matters.

Contact Information