Car salesman pleads guilty to benefit fraud

A CAR salesman who received more than �12,000 in benefits he was not entitled to has been handed a three-month Community Order and an eight-week curfew by magistrates.

Clifford Seymour, of The Chase, Barnston, failed to declare income from a car sales business while claiming housing and council tax benefits.

Uttlesford District Council prosecuted Mr Seymour jointly with the Department for Work and Pensions for housing and council tax benefit fraud. He was also claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance from the Department for Work and Pensions.

At Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court on September 10, Mr Seymour pleaded guilty of failing to inform the council of a change of address and failing to declare his income from the car sales business. He was selling vehicles through a company called FC Motors via a website.

As a result of this fraud, Mr Seymour was overpaid �9,451.85 in Housing Benefit and �2,544.44 in Council Tax benefit. Mr Seymour will be pursued to repay this amount in full.

He was given a three-month Community Order and an eight-week curfew between the hours of 8pm and 6am.

Cllr Robert Chambers, cabinet member for finance and administration, said: “Benefit fraud is theft. It is taking money from all honest taxpayers and this council will not tolerate it. We will not hesitate to take action against fraudsters. Therefore I would urge people to think twice. It is not a case of if we find you, it is a case of when.”