A woman who fraudulently claimed nearly £192,000 in benefits over a 15-year period has been jailed for seven years.
Angel Jackson, of Norbury, 52, was sentenced on Friday at Croydon Crown Court after being found guilty of 30 charges of dishonestly obtaining benefits, one charge of council tax evasion and one charge of unlawful eviction between 1998 and 2013.
An investigation spear-headed by Croydon Council’s corporate anti-fraud team was launched in 2012, following a tip-off. The investigation found that Jackson had misled the authorities by failing to disclose numerous details, including that she was married, using false documents and using a false identity.
Officers also found £20,000 cash in the home of Jackson with video evidence showing she unlawfully evicted a tenant.
Judge Adam Hiddleston said: “You, Angel Jackson, are a thoroughly dishonest person. For over a decade you sought to cheat everyone who crosses your path, the local authorities, insurance, even your ex-husband.”
This comes a week after a former Croydon Council employee was given a suspended sentence for defrauding the same benefits scheme she advised on as part of her job.
Max Okyere, of Birmingham, was also sentenced to eight months imprisonment for perverting the course of justice after falsely claiming the £20,000 cash belonged to him.
Councillor Hamida Ali, the cabinet member for communities, safety and justice, said: “Angel Jackson’s fraud cheated taxpayers in Croydon and across the UK out of thousands of pounds, so I’m very glad to see the court has found in our favour.
“I’m especially proud of our dedicated Croydon Council officers who led this complex case, and I hope this sentence acts as a deterrent to anyone else considering this level of criminality,” she added.