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Dorcas Lamptey, of Manor Way, Borehamwood, fined for claiming housing benefit she was not entitled to
A woman who claimed over £2,000 in housing benefits she was not entitled to has been fined.
Dorcas Lamptey, of Paxton Court, Manor Way, pleaded guilty to a charge of failing to declare a change in her earnings when she was given a pay rise.
The 53-year-old told Hertsmere Borough Council officers she had started working and was receiving a reduced rate of jobseekers allowance in February 2011.
But nine months later, an investigation showed the woman was no longer receiving the benefit because her salary had gone up - something she failed to declare.
Her employer was contacted and provided details of her earnings - showing she was paid more than £1,000 in both December 2011 and January 2011.
When officers reassesed her claim for benefits, they found she had been overpaied £2,378 in housing benefit and £526.73 in council tax benefit.
In March 2007, Lamptey had already been issued with a caution for failing to notify a change in circumstances.
Magistrates fined her £75 - and ordered her to pay prosecution costs of £120 and a victim surcharge of £15 at Watford Magistrates Court on Monday.
No compensation order was made as the council will recover the outstanding balance from the defendant directly.
Councillor John Graham, portfolio holder for finance, said: “There is no excuse for not notifying us of a change in circumstances that could affect your benefit entitlement.
“This case shows we will track down overpayments and take offenders to court.”