Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 17°C

min temp: 12°C

Search

Woodbridge: MS sufferer falsely claimed £24,000 while working at the pub

PUBLISHED: 12:00 15 February 2013 | UPDATED: 15:33 15 February 2013

Former NHS worker must pay back money

Former NHS worker must pay back money

Archant

A 47-YEAR-old woman with multiple sclerosis has been spared jail after falsely claiming £24,000 in disability benefits.

Tracy Maddison, of Orford Road, Bromeswell, near Woodbridge, failed to tell the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) she had been working at a pub for nearly five years despite receiving benefit.

Maddison pleaded guilty at South East Suffolk Magistrates Court to dishonestly failing to notify a changed in her circumstances affecting entitlement to her disability living allowance. The money she incorrectly claimed between January 2007 and December 2011 came to £24,169.

Prosecutor Lesla Small told the court Maddison was in receipt of the allowance from September 2001 to November 2011 after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in February 2000.

As time went on there was an improvement in her condition, but Maddison failed to notify the DWP.

The court heard Maddison said she had difficulty in walking and suffered from severe headaches, along with pain in her legs, and needed help.

However, in 2007 the mother-of-four obtained employment at the Oyster Inn in Butley, near Woodbridge. Maddison told her employer about some aspects about her condition, and allowances were made so she could work.

Ms Small said Maddison’s employer was unaware of her disability payments.

The court was told investigators from the DWP photographed and videoed Maddison while she was working.

During an interview on December 20, 2011, she acknowledged she knew it was dishonest to make false claims for benefit. Maddison also told officials she had become more mobile due to the medication she was taking.

Michael Stephenson, representing Maddison, said: “She is a lady who seems determined not to give in to her illness and keep fighting it.

“Because of medications there has been some improvement. The nature of these things is not black and white.”

District Judge Celia Dawson told Maddison she had falsely claimed a huge amount of money over nearly five years.

Maddison was given six months imprisonment suspended for 12 months. She was also ordered to pay £100 costs.

The money she falsely claimed will now be recovered through her benefits.

A Suffolk vicar is speaking out about the sexual abuse he suffered as a young man – a secret he has kept for almost 40 years – in a bid to stop women suffering at the hands of men.

A Suffolk-based charity has broken the world record for the longest fashion show – raising £24,000 for its work in the process.

Six Ipswich drug dealers have been given prison sentences totalling 19 years following a police operation targeting the supply of heroin in the town.

Fans have a big role to play in the “massive” East Anglian derby this weekend – and must cheer on the Blues all the way to victory.

Police are appealing for witnesses following an early morning burglary in Ipswich where a laptop, cigarettes, food and drink were stolen.

Police chiefs in Suffolk and north Essex are to review their financial situations as fellow East Anglian force Norfolk announces the biggest shake-up in its history.

Steam railway fans will have to wait three weeks longer to see Flying Scotsman steaming to Ipswich.

The Government is to contribute nearly £13m towards the cost of three new road schemes in Suffolk and Essex.

Parents using “free” childcare at some Suffolk providers feel they have to pay top-up fees because the funding from government and the county council is inadequate.

Three nationally-acclaimed poets will be taking to the stage at the Seckford Theatre in Woodbridge to inspire the next generation of Suffolk’s young writers.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24