Devon

Disability benefit fraudster filmed playing golf jailed

A man from Devon who said he was disabled and claimed more than £35,000 in benefits has been jailed after being filmed playing golf.

Philip Bond, 62, from Torquay, said he could not walk more than 50 yards (46m), but was filmed on a golf course and also seen working as a decorator.

Bond was sentenced at Exeter Crown Court to seven months in prison.

Judge Stephen Wildblood said that it was a "flagrant, repeated and knowing deception".

Bond claimed a total of about £36,000.

Golf competitions

He admitted 10 offences of fraudulently claiming state benefits, including in disabled income support and disability living allowance, over a 12-and-a-half year period between 1996 and 2008.

On claim forms he said his mobility was virtually nil and he could not walk far. He also claimed to have difficulties getting in and out of bed, plus severe breathlessness.

However, he was identified playing golf several times a week and even took part in competitions, investigators discovered.

Bond said it was all part of his attempts to take exercise to help with his breathing condition.

Investigators from the Department for Work and Pensions said it was clear that Bond was deceiving the authorities.

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