A benefits cheat has been banned from going out at weekends after falsely pocketing more than £16,000 while enjoying at least two Spanish holidays a year.
Samantha Myatt spent her ‘ill-gotten gains on life’s luxuries’, a court heard.
A judge took the unusual step of banning the 39-year-old mother from going out at the weekend – to stop her jetting off.
Wolverhampton Magistrates Court heard Myatt had been on at least six foreign holidays. But she has now been given a curfew on Friday and Saturday nights for six months.
Myatt, of Linthouse Lane, Wednesfield, first started claiming benefits in 2004 when she said she was a single non-working parent looking after her disabled child. In October 2005 she said her partner Neil Britton had moved in but failed to say he was claiming an occupational pension. Two months later she got work as a kitchen assistant and then a second part-time job at Gala Bingo.
Ms Jacky Bramley, prosecuting, told the court yesterday that statements showed large sums of money had been deposited in her partner’s account, including £23,000 in August 2010 and £68,000 in December 2010.
Mr Mahmood Hussain, defending, told the court Myatt had got into debt and was aware of the seriousness of what she had done. Myatt pleaded guilty to six counts of failing to notify a change in circumstances and three of falsely making a statement to obtain payment or benefit.
Judge Graham Wilkinson said: “You have lied and lied again all the way through this investigation.
"You were spending your ill gotten gains on life’s luxuries.” Myatt was sentenced to 20 weeks suspended for two years. She will also pay costs of £2,265.