LONDON: A British septuagenarian was jailed for 28 months on Friday for defrauding the taxpayer using the identities of a former friend and his own brother who died in 1967.
“It´s a tragedy to see a man of your age in the dock but in reality you only have yourself to blame,” judge Simon Medlands told 79-year-old Carl Jones at Liverpool Crown Court in northwest England.
“You are a dyed-in-the-wool fraudster and as greedy as you are dishonest.”
Jones, already convicted in 1952 for drug trafficking, pleaded guilty to defrauding the welfare system of more than £200,000 ($310,000, 285,000 euros) over the last 13 years after impersonating three different people.
The police found three passports at his home that carried his picture but bore different names.
They included that of similarly-named Charles Jones, Brian Abram — an old schoolfriend — and his brother Roy, who died almost 50 years ago.
The passport application for the latter stated that he had lived in Spain for 22 years, explaining why there was no trace of him in Britain.
Using the documents, Jones claimed housing allowances, various tax credits and pensions from 2002.
The Department for Work and Pensions and Liverpool City Council discovered the scam during a routine investigation.
The defendant´s lawyer pleaded that his client had expressed “genuine remorse” and that the embezzled money had not funded “a lavish lifestyle”, instead being used to provide for his children.
But the judge found that Jones had stolen money from “people who needed it”.