'Disabled' woman seen dancing jailed for £260k benefit fraud

Nasreen Akhtar Image copyright Crown Prosecution Service
Image caption Nasreen Akhtar also said she was a single parent but and was caught living with a partner

A woman who falsely said she was disabled but was seen dancing at a wedding has been jailed for claiming benefits worth £260,000.

Nasreen Akhtar also said she was a single parent but was caught living with a partner, prosecutors said.

She claimed the fraudulent "complex raft of benefits" between 2002 and 2013 based on being a single parent with poor mobility who was too ill to work.

The 50-year-old was caught following covert surveillance after a tip-off.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said police discovered she had a partner when they found him in her bed during a raid on her home in 2013.

Also, while she claimed she was "too ill to work" and had "poor mobility" and "significant care needs", she was seen out and about with her family, and dancing at a wedding, the CPS added.

Akhtar, of Howgill Crescent, Oldham, admitted seven counts of fraud against the local authority and the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).

At Manchester Crown Court she was jailed for two years.

Simon Tunnicliffe, of Mersey Cheshire CPS's fraud unit, said the case went "way beyond the average".

He said it took three years to bring a case against Akhtar as she had attempted - "at further cost to the taxpayer" - to have herself found unfit to stand trial.

"Earlier this year we brought even more compelling evidence that Ms Akhtar was trying to hoodwink the court and the judge decided that she was fit and well enough to stand trial," he said.

Akhtar later pleaded guilty to a total of seven counts of fraud.

The CPS said Akhtar had claimed housing benefit and council tax relief as a single parent for a house she rented, when she had actually owned it jointly with her partner.

She also claimed income support as a single parent when she owned other properties and had significant savings, it added.

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