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CAUGHT ON CAMERA...
THESE images snapped by an undercover surveillance team show David Crellin lugging heavy items around.
But at the time he was claiming the highest rate of Disability Living Allowance, insisting he could barely walk.
Crellin (40), from Lathom Court in Prescot claimed he could walk only a short distance with the aid of a stick. He also insisted that he needed someone to accompany him when he went outside.
On Tuesday (July 7) at Liverpool Crown Court, Crellin was sentenced to 12 months in jail for benefit fraud after claiming £29,141 between September, 1993 and June, 2008.
He had been investigated after a tip-off from a member of the public.
Crellin had been investigated following an allegation by a member of the public received by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in February 2007, that he was employed as a bin man by Knowsley Council and was also working as a doorman.
Evidence has since been made available that he had been employed by Knowsley Council since February 2001.
He was employed as a Security Officer, visiting council sites. This included walking up to two miles per shift.
In March 2002, he was moved to the Refuse Department, visiting council houses to collect recycled materials stored in 55 litre boxes, which were then lifted into vehicles.
In September 2007, Crellin joined the Bulky Household Waste Collection Team still at Knowsley as a driver and loader on a two man team. He collected up to one and 2.5 tonnes of bulky rubbish from houses, including beds, fridges, freezers, TVs and settees.
Officers from the DWP carried out surveillance on Crellin, filming the Bulky Waste Collection Team for more than a year.
He was filmed wearing Knowsley Council uniform and driving a council vehicle, as well as at numerous houses across the borough.
Further investigations into Crellin’s activities unearthed evidence that he worked as a security guard for two companies between 1997 and 1999 and May 1999 and February 2001.
After the hearing, Roy Paul, North West Fraud Operations Manager for the Department of Work and Pensions said: “This is another example of our success at tackling benefit fraud locally, in this case acting on information received from the public, and the sentence imposed illustrates the seriousness of the crime.
“Our skilled teams of investigators will root out anyone who commits benefit fraud and steals money intended for vulnerable members of our society.
“I would urge anyone with information about alleged benefit cheats to contact our National Benefit Fraud Hotline, free and in confidence, on 0800 854 440.
“In addition to the sentence imposed by the court, the Department will now take steps to recover benefit falsely obtained, to ensure Mr Crellin does not benefit financially from his criminal activity”.
A spokesperson for Knowsley Council responded: “The council supports the action taken to tackle benefit fraud.”
- CRELLIN also received an eight month sentence for a separate charge of wounding, brought by the Crown Prosecution Service.
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