A benefits cheat wrongly claimed more than £18,000 in payments in just over two years after failing to declare his job as a driver, a court heard.
Reginald Osborn, from Rugeley, began claiming pension credit and council tax benefit in July 2009, but three months later started work as a self-employed driver for W.D.Cooper’s in Cannock.
The court heard the 64-year-old failed to tell both the Department of Work and Pensions and Cannock Chase District Council of his new job and carried on claiming benefits. In interview, when the offences came to light last year, he denied making claims.
Osborn was overpaid £15,791 in pension credits and £2,280 in council tax benefit, Cannock magistrates heard.
He also went on to work for another company as a driver and was paid cash in hand.
Rob Perry, defending, said Osborn had voluntarily started repaying the amount at the rate of £17 a week from his pension credits. He was no longer able to work due to arthritis in his right hand.
Mr Perry said: “The claim has been going on for a few years and his property is now up for sale. There is a buyer and he intends to make good the repayments when it is sold.” The total overpayment amounted to £18,071. Osborn, of Catkin Walk, Rugeley, pleaded guilty to two charges of failing to notify the relevant authorities of a change in circumstances in respect of his benefit payments between November 2009 and February 2012.
He was sent to Stafford Crown Court for sentence on a date to be set. The magistrates granted him unconditional bail.